WITH the onset of the 2017 Sea Turtle nesting season, the Management of Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa with the support of local Department of Fisheries last week conducted an orientation & training workshop for staff members on the management of the sea turtle population.
The workshop was held on Wednesday, March 22 and targeted staff members drawn from the hotel’s Kids Klub, Security, Entertainment, Grounds, Pools and Guest Relations Departments. This workshop is staged as a yearly activity which is aimed at equipping staff from selected Departments with the necessary knowledge to enable them to respond in an informed and effective manner to turtle nesting and hatching events. Last week’s workshop was held to coincide with the Turtle Nesting season which runs from April to October each year.
Participants in the workshop were provided with “know-how” on aspects such as: identification of species and tracks, life cycle, nesting information and habits, salvaging, custody and release of disoriented hatchlings, data collection, etc.
Some ten staff members drawn from the Departments listed earlier benefited from the workshop which was conducted by Ms. Yvonne Edwin and Ms. Shanna Emmanuel from the Department of Fisheries. The 2 ½ mile stretch of beach which runs parallel to the Coconut Bay hotel is used each year as a nesting ground by sea turtles. Coconut Bay security and staff are engaged each year in an active programme of turtle monitoring with the support and collaboration of the Department of Fisheries and the St Lucia National Trust. Coconut Bay has initiated discussions with the Department of Fisheries towards strengthening the hotel’s involvement in monitoring efforts. The hotel is keen on partnering with and providing support to the Department of Fisheries as relates to protection of sea turtle. As part of its ongoing efforts, Coconut Bay recently erected an impressive Turtle Information Billboard on property for the benefit of visitors and to keep them informed about turtle events. The recently held orientation and training workshop formed part of Coconut Bay’s commitment geared towards advancing sustainability of the Sea Turtles.