I’ve spent 2 weeks at Tanjong Jara now and I am absolutely loving it. Working for Lang Tengah Turtle Watch is so much fun and It’s great to see that what I’m doing is making a direct difference to sea turtle conservation in this part of Malaysia.

The tasks we do here vary a lot from day to day, but mostly revolve around LTTW’s nest adoption program. In this part of Malaysia it’s still legal to sell turtle eggs to the market, which has completely decimated populations. I’m planning a longer post about this, but basically we need to purchase nests of turtle eggs and relocate them to our hatcheries where we can protect them from all sorts of threats and give them the best chance of survival.

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One of the turtle hatcheries

All the money for purchasing these eggs comes from nest adoptions. We usually spend half of our day at the visitors hut near the resort where we talk to guests, and the other half running the admin and computer side of nest adoptions – keeping our sponsors updated with lots of emails and photos of the entire process.

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View of the beach from our visitors hut – not a bad place to sit all day!

We do a lot of other activities too, and the daily tasks are really varied. Last week we had a beach cleaning event with a school. We went out to the school and briefed them on how the event would work, then later in the week they visited Kuala Abang Beach, which is right near where we live. Rubbish washing up from the beach is a huge issue here, and the basic goal was for kids to compete in teams to remove as much rubbish as possible. 30 kids removed 80 bags of rubbish in about an hour!

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Rifqah briefing kids about the beach clean event.
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With some of my beach cleaning team

 

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“Kami adalah pemenang!”  (We are the winners!)

 

DSC_0900.JPGIt was also my birthday last week and I had such a fantastic day. LTTW has caught on fairly quickly regarding my food obsession, so the day was filled with delicious Malay food and treats.

The field naturalist of the resort, Captain Mok, treated us all to a celebratory buffet breakfast, I was bought several cakes throughout the day, and we went out for tea at an Indian/Malay restaurant in the nearby town. 

Working here with such a fantastic team of people, helping to save green sea turtles – I couldn’t think of better way to bring in my 23rd year! 57106660_282686169320889_8494455493324963840_n.jpg

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I was very spoiled!
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The questionable photo Lang Tengah decided to publish of me. You can see a hatchery in the background.