Still not anywhere near our target of 1000 new turtles, we continued the super patrol this week. Mine was with Bernardo. I have been feeling really tired lately, lack of sleep as I was out in town instead of sleeping! Luis said there would be no rain until the next morning, which was a good news. I was not looking forward working in the rain after the last experience.
We found the first turtle directly beside Villa Ginger and she was still digging the egg chamber. Bernardo said we should move on as there would be more turtles after mile 3. Unfortunately, not a single track until mile 4. We came across a spoter, saying that the next turtle was tapando and Andy and Borja were working with it. There were so many tourists around the turtle, some were even in front of it!!! I tried to inform the tourists but they did not understand English. Bernardo and I left after spoken to Andy and Borja.
We kept walking and I thought “it is going to be hell of a long night…no turtles at all!” We saw another track near mile 4 6/8. We decided to wait for it as it was digging the egg chamber. While we were waiting, we saw a turtle coming ashore. It just climbed over a small cliff and started to dig a bodypit. It took quite some time for both of them to be ready to work with so Bernardo went further to check for more tracks and he found another two. The first one was laying while the other one was camouflaging. We worked with one and came back to the one laying, it was already camouflaging by then. When we came back to the first two, they were both camouflaging. We had walked for almost 2 hours with no turtles and within that 30-45min, we had four new turtles!!!
After that we only saw one that was limpiando. We walked until mile 5 and back to somewhere between mile 3-4 and found no new tracks. One left before she even finished its bodypit. We decided to go back to the only one and wait there. I checked and it was digging the egg chamber. The handphone’s display showed 1.19am. Bernardo fell asleep waiting. I was too scared to sleep. I did not want to be surprised by a jaguar. I checked again at 1.39am, it was still digging. This time I felt really bored and sleepy so I laid my head on the mochila. I could see stars and a few shooting stars. It started to feel chilly. Clouds were moving fast, covering the stars on and off. I could see lightning far ahead South. I just hope it would not rain any sooner. I went up and checked again at 2am and it had started to lay some eggs. I woke Bernardo up and told him that. At 2.15am, she was covering and I was so glad to be able to finally work with it! I got myself a cut while trying to put the tag back into the tagger.
It was 2.45am when we finished. We walked to mile 5 and when we turned back, it was past 3am. There were no new tracks on our way back. We found only one turtle but it was hueqiando and we did not have time to wait for it. It felt like a long walk back to the station. We reached at 4am. I rewrote the data on the yellow book. I was shit exhausted…just wanted a good hot shower, put some ‘grandma oil’ on my mosquitoes and sandflies bites. It started to rain heavily when I went to bed. I wanted to go online but the internet connection was off. I dozed off near to 6am. I passed out until almost 6pm in the evening, only woke up twice to pee. I guess I was just too tired. It was a good long sleep and I needed that!