For my Act for Nature, I chose to share with my family about Hawksbill Sea Turtles. Now is around the time of their nesting season, so they may be spotted more often on our shores. After attending a talk on Hawksbill Turtles, I learnt that they are very sensitive when they come up to nest, so I really wanted to share about what to do if anyone encounters them. When they are disturbed, they abandon their nest and return back to the sea. If they have not laid their eggs, the eggs will be laid in sea. The seawater will flood the egg and the embryo will not survive as it has no air to breathe. Hawksbill turtles are critically endangered, every egg needs to have a chance of survival if we want to save the turtles and help their population number increase again.
My family has also seen Hawksbill Turtles during our dive trips, so I felt that it would be cool to learn more about them together. I shared with them about their basic diet, movement activities as well as how to identify them from other species of turtles (2 pairs of prefrontal scales, the scales above their eyes). My family was very intrigued to know that there were turtles in Singapore and the details of their nesting patterns. After the sharing, they were very impressed and amazed at our local marine biodiversity.
Seeing their interest in my sharing was certainly very rewarding and it reminded me of my passion to learn more about wildlife too. A quote came to mind,
In the end, we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand and we will understand only what we are taught.Baba Dioum
This activity helped me to understand and have a first-hand experience the truth of this quote. Biodiversity education is so important, because it firstly raises awareness to what may have been unnoticed or simply unknown. Through their own discoveries, others may come to love to Nature too. I think this definitely is some food for thought. Perhaps schools could play a part in instilling youth’s love for Nature by organising guided Nature walks, just like how students visit museums and performances to gain arts appreciation.
To conclude, I’m grateful to my family who gave me their time and attention for my sharing and am feeling more motivated to share more about wildlife with others now! I think I’ll start small, beginning with my circle of friends first.