A turtle that visited the only naturally occurring beach in Male' again on Tuesday evening and laid eggs.
A turtle was sighted on the same beach nearly three weeks ago as well. It was returned to the sea before it could lay that time though. However this time police had arrived on site and ensured the turtle would not face any harm from bystanders, leading the turtle to lay eggs.
The 96 eggs the turtle laid last night has been taken to Four Seasons Kuda Huraa Resort under the care of Environmental Protection Agency. The turtle laid eggs in the beach by SinaMale' Bridge.
Director of EPA Ibrahim Naeem said the resort's marine divers were the one that had ensured the safe relocation of the turtle eggs and that they will be in charge of them until they hatch. He said EPA would still monitor the case closely.
Turtle eggs have been relocated previously as well for the same purpose Naeem said as the beach area that the visiting turtle had laid eggs was an area that gets rough waves.
"As there was a chance the eggs may get damaged, we moved them to another area so that they could safely hatch. This was the only place near Male' where it could be done," he said.
Turtle eggs are expected to hatch within two months.
Naeem told Mihaaru news last night that they had informed no one was to touch the turtle that had come up to the same beach.
"We let the turtle leave on its own this time because we felt we made it leave too early last time. That's why we asked everyone not to bother it," he said.
It is unclear if the turtle that laid eggs last night was the same turtle as from three weeks ago. However turtles are known to the site they were born to lay eggs. Naeem said EPA was working to figure out if it is the same turtle.
The authorities attracted a lot of public scrutiny when they had returned the turtle that visited in February back to the sea too early, as it had already dug a hole then.
Turtles are an endangered species, and protected under Maldives' law.