Tiny baby sea turtles get a VIP escort to the ocean every year – from the Colombian Navy

Tiny baby sea turtles get a VIP escort to the ocean every year – from the Colombian Navy It’s a job you perhaps don’t expect Colombia’s Navy to assist with, but protecting one of their country’s most fragile inhabitants isn’t a task for just anyone.

legitimate gambling sites When they’re not fighting to prevent drug smuggling, stowaways and arms dealing on the country’s Pacific Coast, the Navy are escorting baby sea turtles – to the ocean. We’ll let that just sink in a second.

ecumenically gibson casino mobile Every year, thousands of tiny Olive Ridley find themselves abandoned by their mothers. Once they are hatched, the must make the treacherous journey from their nests to ocean – alone. What makes this pilgrimage so perilous is the risk of being killed by dogs, birds and crabs, poached for their eggs, meat, skin and shells and perishing under fierce sunlight.

Victoria Kellaway
The Navy assist with one of the their country’s most fragile inhabitants
Victoria Kellaway
The baby turtles are no bigger than the palm of a hand

They are no bigger than the palm of a human hand yet must walk up to 20 metres to reach the water.

Victoria Kellaway, co-author of the bestselling satire Colombia a comedy of errors , was on hand to capture the Navy assisting the tiny turtles on El Almejal beach, near Bahia Solano in Chocó.

Victoria Kellaway
One of the baby turtles at the shore
Victoria Kellaway
Their mothers leave the eggs as soon as they have laid them

Victoria has made Colombia her home since falling in love with it on her travels six years ago.

Her amazing images show how the Navy responds every time a group of hatchlings are seen to emerge on the beach, remaining on armed guard until every last turtle has reached the ocean, even helping those babies who lag behind.

Victoria Kellaway
The turtles in transportation
Victoria Kellaway
And at the shore line

Between June and October, hundreds of female sea turtles can be found crawling onto the country’s beaches and lay over an astounding one hundred eggs in the nests they dig in the sand.

The mothers don’t hang around. Once this is job is done and dusted, it’s back to the ocean for them, while their eggs to incubate for around 60 days until the babies emerge in a group and begin their pilgrimage.

Victoria Kellaway
Victoria’s photos capture the process in its entirety
Victoria Kellaway
The turtles face many challenges

Olive Ridley sea turtles, along with many sea turtle species, are fighting to survive in the face of poaching, accidental entanglement in fishing nets and the rapid destruction of their habit.

Climate change also alters sand temperatures, which affects the sex of their hatchlings.

Colombia has several charities that patrol its beaches at night and collect newly laid turtle eggs that are then transferred to a protected zone so they can hatch in peace.

The turtles’ walk to the water is an important part of their development though and must be made alone, under the watchful eye of the country’s Navy.