Shout out to Images by Liz for the lead photo taken under a full moon this week at Poipu Beach. Kauai has seen a plethora of Hawaiian sea turtles coming ashore each night. Apparently, this is part of the fascinating way that sea turtles lay their eggs.
If you have any exceptional Hawaii photos you would like to share with readers at Beat of Hawaii, just let us know. You can upload them here. If we use one, we’ll be sure to give you credit.
Turtles can visit the beach for several nights before actually laying their eggs. They dig egg chambers in different locations over several nights to find the best possible location in which to incubate the eggs. The process begins by what is called “body pitting,” wherein the turtles use front flippers and body to create the pit. Then, they use hind flippers to dig the egg chamber. Digging a nest can take hours. If they determine that the location is not suitable due to shells, rocks, roots, or simply too dense sand, they move to a new place and begin once again.
Where do Hawaiian sea turtles live? Come to the islands and visit our beloved Honu.
Visit Kauai at and around Poipu Beach Park and Brennecke’s Beach. But that’s just for starters.
On the Big Island, a favorite place is Turtle Cove in front of the Westin Hapuna Beach Resort. You can reach it without stepping on the hotel property. Go to Hapuna Beach and walk as far as you can on the hotel side. Get in the ocean and swim around the rocks into the cove. You won’t be disappointed with the number of Hawaiian Sea Turtles you find. It has some of the best Hawaii snorkeling too. Also check Anaehoomalu Bay, Honaunau, Kahalu’u Beach, Kahuwai Bay, Kuki’o Beach, and Punaluu Black Sand Beach.
On Maui, look for turtles at Makena, Wailea, and Kihei beaches.
And on Oahu, try Makaha, Waikiki, and Laniakea beaches.
Observation Guidelines: Practice social distancing! Turtles are generally not afraid of people. They are protected by law and it’s illegal to touch them. The best recommendation is to stay back about 20 feet and not chase, scare, or hinder their movement.
Endangered Sea Turtles. The Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles, “Honu,” is one of the most ancient species of the world and existed before dinosaurs. Treat this endangered species with respect. Each weighs up to 500 pounds and have a long life span. Honu live close to the shores of our Hawaiian Islands, feed primarily on seaweed, and swim up to 35 mph. Hawksbill Sea Turtles, “ea” in Hawaiian, are elusive and nearly extinct. Noted for its shiny shell, they are unfortunately still hunted illegally. There are only a few dozen believed to be in Hawaii. Leatherback Sea Turtles are the largest of all living turtles (in fact all sea reptiles). This species has no shell and instead is covered by black rubber-like skin and oily flesh. Leatherbacks dwell in deep water away from the island shores and can weigh up to one ton.
Do you have a favorite location to view Hawaiian Sea Turtles? Please leave a comment.
Mahalo to Kauai Wedding Officiant for letting us know this event was happening.