Great Barrier Reef Turtle Study

The Great Barrier Reef is a world wonder whose pristine waters have long been explored by those wanting to discover what lies beneath. The beautiful marine park stretches on for miles and can even be glimpsed from Space. Teeming with life, encapsulating every shade of blue and with warm welcoming waters it’s no wonder that the reef is such a sought after spot for snorkelers and divers.

The Ancient Mariners of the Sea

Along with the hundreds of shoals of tropical fish, the elegant drifting Stingrays and the curious little sharks, the Great Barrier Reef is also home to Marine Turtles. Often called the ancient mariners of the sea, these wise little creatures are an evocative sight on the Great Barrier Reef and a delight to see swimming beneath the waves. With many turtles on the endangered list it’s important to care for and to protect these creatures and to encourage them to thrive.

From green turtles to loggerheads, hawksbill to flatback, these are the species visitors to the reef have become accustomed to seeing. However over the last two years the mysterious deaths of many of these native turtles has been baffling researchers who want to protect and preserve the population.

The Enigma of Turtle Deaths

A new study conducted by marine experts is currently underway as scientists and marine biologists hope to unravel the enigma that has been causing harm to the turtles who usually thrive in the beautiful waters around the reef. Some scientists believe it may be the result of higher levels of water pollution and are currently observing the waters and the traces found in the turtle’s shells to see if they can gather a clearer idea. Turtles are being humanely caught, tagged and sampled before being released so scientists can monitor the contents of the turtle’s blood and stomach.

Keeping the Reef Beautiful

The WWA say that turtles are one of the best barometers when it comes to finding out about reef health and can be one of the first signs that contaminants are in the waters and could be damaging the fragile eco system. Determining the cause of the deaths and figuring out which pollutants are in the waters are the first steps in preventing and controlling further problems. Keeping the reef clean, safe and beautiful is essential, not only for the turtles to thrive but also for keeping the national treasure of Australia in the best possible condition it can be.

Book one of our Great Barrier Reef Tours today to see the different types of marine turtles.