LABUAN, A total of 85 endangered Hawksbill baby turtles were released into the sea here on Saturday night from the Rusukan Besar Island Turtle Conservation Centre.

These hatchlings, a part of hundreds of turtle eggs hatched at the centre, had a special send-off orchestrated by 80 volunteers from Labuan International School, SM St Anthony, and SMK Taman Perumahan Bedaun.

This initiative, which aims to both protect the Hawksbill turtle and raise environmental consciousness, is a collaborative project between the Labuan Mandarin Lions Club, Labuan Fisheries Department, and Labuan branch of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture (MOTAC.

Labuan Mandarin Lions Club president Chia Sia Theng said the event aligns with the global campaign for World Environment Day, focusing on combating plastic pollution, while simultaneously advocating for the well-being of these precious marine creatures.

“The release was a poignant symbol of the resilience and fragility of the Hawksbill turtle population,” he said during the programme at Rusukan Besar Island.

The event also highlighted the significance of beach clean-up initiatives as essential components of environmental education and engagement, serving as vital measures to keep oceans free of harmful debris.

Chia said this release of Hawksbill baby turtles exemplifies the power of collective action in safeguarding endangered species and the precious oceans.

“It underscores the responsibility we all share in preserving the rich biodiversity of our marine ecosystems,” he said.

Prior to the release, students in attendance were briefed on the conservation efforts that Rusukan Besar Island engages in for the protection of these turtles by Labuan Fisheries Department head of Turtle Conservation and Marine, Ryanto Saifuddin.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency