Volunteer to care for our turtles

Marine turtles hatching on the beach. Photo credit: cooloolacoastcare.org.au

Marine turtles hatching on the beach. Photo credit: cooloolacoastcare.org.au

Santa has not been the only visitor bringing gifts to Rainbow Beach this season – from now until the end of March 2022 wild turtles bestow us with the honour of witnessing their nesting season on our local beaches.

But the turtles need our help to keep them safe and to ensure their population is thriving.

Wonderful local volunteer group Cooloola Coastcare monitors local marine turtle activity in a project called TurtleCare. Volunteers monitor turtles nesting on the beaches north and south of Rainbow Beach and assist with rescuing stranded and injured turtles.

This project was started during the 2018-2019 turtle season by Joan Burnett.

Do you walk along Rainbow Beach in the mornings on a regular basis?

Cooloola Coastcare is always looking for volunteers for TurtleCare on Rainbow Beach and Teewah Beach from October to March. Training is provided at no cost.

While you are walking in the early morning, you can be looking for turtle tracks or hatchlings and reporting them to the project leader. Even sightings of dead turtles or egg shells are useful data for their research.

Spotted a turtle or some tracks?

Phone or text Joan Burnett 0407 810 510 or Lindy Orwin 0478 039 322 for urgent notifications.

Or email turtlecare@cooloolacoastcare.org.au for any queries or if you can join in local turtle monitoring.

There are three ways to participate in TurtleCare:

Fully Trained Turtle Permit Holder:

To qualify, you must participate in free training for seven days at Mon Repos Turtle Research Centre between December and March. It is an amazing experience. You’ll spend time on the beach each night watching turtles laying eggs, relocating nests, tagging turtles, observing hatchings and collecting data.

Camping is free onsite with a small contribution for meals prepared in the group kitchen.

Coastcare is always looking for more volunteers who would like to attend training and help look after the Cooloola turtles.

TurtleCare Turtle Track Spotter:

After a short briefing, you’ll be all set to identify turtle tracks on the beach and identify the turtle from those tracks while you get your daily exercise walking on the beach early in the morning.

If you regularly walk on the beach, drive on the beach, say as a tour guide, or work on the beach catching bait worms or such, get in touch with TurtleCare to check when briefing sessions are being held.

Interested Bystander:

Follow TurtleCare Rainbow Beach on Facebook.

They post regular updates and announce any special events like a daylight hatching, so you can see the little turtles make their way to the water.

Contact coordinator@cooloolacoastcare.org.au or call Lindy on 0478 039 322 to register your interest.

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