A highly endangered species of sea turtle has taken advantage of the tourist-free beaches in Brazil and returned to take up residence. Scores of Hawksbill sea turtles were hatched at a beach in Paulista, in Brazil's Pernambuco state, over the weekend. How amazing!
The sight was witnessed by a few researchers from the local Urban Sustainability Centre, and it's believed there's more to come – local authorities said there are still a number of nests left on the beach.
The Hawksbill sea turtle
Hawksbill sea turtles are named for their narrow, pointed beak, and have a distinctive pattern of overlapping scales on their shells that form a serrated-look on the edge. Their shells make them highly valuable and were once used to make frames for glasses and combs.
Usually found in coral reefs of the Indian, Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, they feed on sea sponges, sea anemones and jellyfish. Scientists believe the species is 100 million years old, and a fundamental link in marine ecosystems and help to maintain the health of coral reefs and sea grass beds. Like other sea turtles, they're under threat from the loss of nesting and feeding habitats, excessive egg collections, pollution and coastal development – but their biggest threat is the wildlife trade.