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Cozumel turtles
Recently hatched baby turtle.
  Important lessons were learnt in the 2007 turtle nesting season, said Christopher González Baca, Cozumel's Deputy Director for the Environment last week.

Almost 3,000 nests were counted on the island's beaches and a study was made about the effect of climate change on the eggs.

Hurricane Dean passed by to the south of Cozumel in August, bringing rough seas and rain in the middle of the nesting season. Mr. González said that this had provided an "innovative" research opportunity.

Researchers on the island learnt that the eggs are more vulnerable in some stages of their development than others - information that will be useful in future turtle nest protection projects.

During the 6 months of the season more than 150 volunteers worked for the project in 8 different brigades. They took it in turns to patrol beaches on the east side of the island making sure turtles were able to lay their eggs.

Mr. González said that they had recorded 2,965 nests. 2,808 were from Green Turtles and 157 were from Loggerheads. He estimated that more than 300,000 baby turtles had hatched in total.

For more information about protecting Cozumel's turtles, visit the Cozumel Turtle Salvation Project.

Related stories:

"More Than 800 Turtle Nests" Aug 8, 2007.

"Turtle Savers Seek $10,000" Mar 7, 2007.

"Record-Breaking Turtle Season" Jul 26, 2006.