Khamis, 25 Ogos 2011

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TURTLE SANCTUARY AT KERACHUT BEACH PENANG MALAYSIA « SHIMWORLD

Posted: 25 Aug 2011 04:52 PM PDT


JAN SHIM
Good morning Penang! Hearty breakfast @ G Cafe checked. First stop Penang National Park. Can't wait to see the Turtle Sanctuary. #fb

Way back in 1958, the Pantai Acheh Forest Reserve was first proposed as a nature conservation area by a group called the "Committee for the Preservation of Natural Beauty". Since that time, both nature interest groups and even government reports have proposed that the Reserve be turned into some kind of park and conservation area. The Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) made several representations to the state and federal governments to turn Pantai Acheh into a national park. It was on 4 April 2003 when Pantai Acheh Forest Reserve was finally declared the Penang National Park by the then deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. Source: Penang Vacations

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The Penang National Park (Taman Negara Pulau Pinang) is one of the few natural forested areas left on the island. It is also currently the world's smallest national park.

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Being briefed about the Penang National Park by our local guide before boarding our boat to Turtle Sanctuary.

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A view of the Penang National Park jetty from upper deck of the building in pic no. 2 above

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The Brunei Times journalist Zatty leaves a personal message for the environment.

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Wooden jetty used by local fishermen to access their boats. A wider concrete walk path is adjacent to this one that caters to commercial visitors (see picture below)

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The horizon before the jetty and the moutainous backdrop a picturesque opportunity on a good day.

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I interrupted a Middle-Eastern female visitor who was about to take a photo of her husband for this photo opportunity. In return, I helped them take their couple photo against this serene horizon.

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Off we went on a boat ride to Pantai Kerachut where the Turtle Sanctuary is located.

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Borneo Bulletin journalist Hamidah taking a photo of the unique Meromictic Lake from the suspended bridge at Pantai Kerachut.

The lake we visited is known as Meromictic Lake which can only be found at Penang National Park, one of only 19 places around the world. 'Mereomictic' refers to the two layers of sea and river water which does not mix with each other. Fresh water is relatively lower in density as compared to the hypersaline sea water.

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Short as the suspension bridge may be, it's making a little quizzy from the "suspense" motion as more visitors began crossing it.

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A photo of Tourism Malaysia staff, Georgina, taking a picture of the Tasik Meromiktik signboard.

The Park is also home to many birds, reptiles, amphibians and of course the famous turtles, especially the Green turtles (Chelonia mydas), the Ridley turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea), the Leatherback turtles and the Hawksbill turtles (Eretmochelys imbricate).

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Michelle taking a picture of the Turtle Crossing on her iPhone presumably to show her kids at home how turtles are protected on the island. Note how the metal signboard is covered in plastic laminate to prevent it from corrosion. I have seen many similar signboards that are just left to corrode.

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One of a large number of nesting sites grounds visitors can find on Pantai Kerachut. The eggs are later relocated to a hatchery to improve their chance of survival.

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Camping and weekend programmes organised by the National Park are also available for students who are interested in this activity. Rich in biodiversity and wildlife, the park has attracted world-renowned scientists, researchers and even the National Geographic crew to study and learn from its pristine surroundings.

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In this pocket of undisturbed natural beauty, we must learn to appreciate the natural heritage and help to promote their conservation for future generations.

Famous for its seasonal meromictic lake, Pantai Kerachut is a popular picnic and camping site and famous turtle hatchery. Collecting of the turtles' eggs is prohibited. Pantai Kerachut is the only beach where the Green Sea Turtle Chelonia mydas can be spotted. It is believed that the Green Turtle only migrate here for nesting as extensive algae are found around Penang Island. It is one of the largest sea turtle and the Penang National Park will ensure the continuity of the turtles visit.

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Protected by a series of nets are turtle eggs waiting to be hatched in its natural environment.

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Pantai Kerachut is home to the Green turtles, the Ridley turtles, the Leatherback turtles and the Hawksbill turtles. I forgot to ask which species these baby turtles belong to.

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This baby Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) may be tiny but their front flippers can be sharp so becareful when handling them as there's a risk of dropping one accidentally as they struggle to get away.

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An amazing replica that illustrates baby turtles leaving their eggs shortly after hatching.

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All good things must eventually come to an end. The boat ride reminded me of the times I visited Manukan Island in KK) & Langkawi Island. I think I've had more boat rides in Malaysia than I do in Brunei.

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