The three states of Terengganu, Melaka and Sabah will be celebrating World Sea Turtles Day (WSTD) on 16 June.
The World Sea Turtle Day, which is celebrated globally on every June 16, was created in honor of Dr. Archie Carr, a naturalist who dedicated his life to understanding sea turtles. Dr Carr is responsible for much of what we know today about the biology of these species.
According to the World Wide Fund (WWF), for Nature, Malaysia who is jointly organising the triple celebration hopes that the celebration will appeal to the public to show support for the sea turtles – the ancient creatures of the sea and endangered species.
Out of the seven sea turtles species in the world, four of them can be found in Malaysia.
In Terengganu, the campaign’s theme ‘Telur Penyu Beli Jangan, Makan Pun Tidak!’ (Turtles Eggs, Buy not, Eat Also not!) is jointly organised with Universiti Malaysia Terengganu and will be held at Bazaar Warisan, Kuala Terengganu, from 8.30am to 5.00pm.
Dr Harlina Halizah Sira, renowned motivational speaker will give a talk and the highlight will be a special appearance by the Terengganu’s football team players, Skuad Penyu.
The largest population of the Hawksbill turtle species in Peninsular Malaysia can be found in the historic state of Melaka.
Themed ‘Melaka Our Home, Hawksbills Our Heritage’, the event is jointly organised with the State Department of Fisheries in collaboration with the Department of Education, Ministry of Tourism, Melaka Office and other state government agencies.
The celebration on 16 June will be a whole day affair from 11.00am to 8.00pm at Dataran Pahlawan.
The public will be treated to a fun-filled day featuring turtle race, face painting, pledge to save turtles using turtle origami and special performances among others.
As in Sabah, WWF will organize a two days and one night camp for the local children in Semporna themed ‘Celebrating World Sea Turtle Day: Sea Turtle Camp’.
Activities to delight the children will be treasure-hunt games on the beach based on the turtle life cycle and snorkeling at seagrass beds to search for grazing turtles.
If the participants are lucky that night, they would be able to see a turtle laying eggs during beach patrolling as the nesting season has begun.
For those who are staying in Terengganu, Melaka and Sabah, do mark 16 June in your calendar and attend these WSTD celebration.
You can have fun while supporting the cause of turtles conservation.
Another way you can help in saving the turtles, is to ‘adopt a turtle’ monthly for RM38.00.
8TV had taken up this project and had adopted 8 turtles so far. Their target is to adopt 100 turtles.
If you prefer to be more active than just forking out your RM38 monthly, you can register as a turtle volunteer with HOPE.
HOPE, which stands for ‘Help our Penyu’, is a registered society and non-profit organization in Malaysia, which through community-based turtle volunteer projects and outreach programs empowers Malaysians to act and save the sea turtles of Terengganu state for future generations.