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Street lighting changed on Magnetic Island to help turtle hatchlings safely reach the ocean

Street lighting changed on Magnetic Island to help turtle hatchlings safely reach the ocean
March 13, 2021

Townsville City Council has changed its street lighting near a turtle nesting beach to a warm-coloured LED light to assist turtle hatchlings on Magnetic Island safely reach the ocean.

Warm-coloured LED lights have been trialled by Ergon at Mon Repos near Bundaberg, and have been a success. Townsville City Council are hoping that the same success can be replicated on the island to help their turtles get out to sea safely

Community Health, Safety and Environmental Sustainability Committee chairperson Maurie Soars notes “locals and visitors to Magnetic Island are lucky enough to share their space with a variety of sea turtles, who use the beaches to nest.

“When newly hatched turtles emerge from the nest, they try to find their way to the sea by following light. Hatchlings can become disoriented by artificial lights, which can lead them away from the sea.

“This is why Council has swapped a bright street light near the beach below Base Backpackers with a warm-coloured LED light. Warm colours, like red, orange and yellow are less likely to interfere with the hatchlings’ journey to the sea.

“If this trial is successful, Council will look at installing these lights at other known turtle nesting sites.”

Soars said the recent installation of coloured lights at the end of Picnic Bay Jetty used similar turtle-friendly technology.

“Reducing manmade impact on natural environments is important to Council, which is why we used lights that would have very little impact on turtles and other marine life.”

Image courtesy of Magnetic Island Network for Turtles Facebook 

Related Articles

3rd March 2021 - SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast Aquarium marks World Wildlife Day with release of hybrid turtle

1st February 2021 - Turtle program calls for innovative solutions to protect hatchlings

15th December 2020 - $300,000 investment announced for Mon Repos Turtle Nest Cooling Trial

15th November 2020 - Concerns raised over operation of Quoin Island Turtle Rehabilitation Centre

23rd May 2020 - Aussie Ark commits to turtle conservation on World Turtle Day

12th February 2020 - Aussie Ark commit to save critically endangered Manning River Turtles 

24th November 2019 - New $22 million Mon Repos Turtle Centre officially opens

30th September 2019 - New Mon Repos multimillion-dollar immersive turtle centre set to open

28th August 2019 - Sea World team releases pair of rehabilitated green turtles

11th August 2019 - Adelaide Zoo now home to two pig-nosed turtles

16th March 2019 - Flatback Sea Turtles at SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium help raise awareness of endangered marine life

23rd May 2016 - Marine attractions highlight conservation efforts on World Turtle Day

4th February 2016 - Protected marine waters keep turtles connected in their annual migration

21st October 2015 - Mon Repos Turtle Centre’s makeover in time for turtle season

29th October 2014 - Bundaberg region to promote turtle tourism


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