The only time Bonaire’s sea turtles come ashore is when adult females emerge to lay their nests. Each year they arrive, sometimes from thousands of kilometers away. They return to the same beaches where they were born decades before. Over a period of weeks, the adult females and males congregate in the open water around Bonaire, engaging in courtship and mating.
Beginning in April and continuing through December, females make repeated crawls onto beaches where they lay their nests. Each turtle will lay on average 3 to 6 clutches of eggs, depositing 100 to 180 eggs per nest, depending on species. Once a nest is laid, the female returns to the sea, leaving the eggs on their own, to hatch in about 60 days. The entire nest of eggs hatches at the same time and the baby turtles scramble together to the sea. These hatchlings face many predators on land and in the sea, such as ghost crabs, fish and birds.
For more information click on the other baby turtles or follow this link to Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire!