Having an urge to save the planet and some endangered species on the planet is in everyone's mind but very few does this religiously and give their 100 Percent on daily basis. If we in India only decides the doing something good for society, nature, environment, or planet on daily basis then i am sure we will be able to make a better tomorrow for our upcoming generations which they deserve. Its a story about some of those people who are saving the most famous Olive Ridley Sea Turtles which is an endangered species.
These turtles are vanishing and if we do not protect them, these will be seen in photographs or in history books only.
I got a chance to visit a place which is one of the place out of some places in India where people of a village and a government body do the hatching of these turtles every year from Oct to Feb/March. They put lot of efforts for this.
Where is this place?
This is a Small village which has a small population and the people of the village has farming and tourism for earning for their living hood.This Village’s Name is Velas Village and its in Ratnagiri District in Maharashtra.
How to Reach Velas Village
This place is roughly 270 Kmk From Mumbai. To reach to this place you can go by road only as the train connectivity is far from this village. You can take train till Chiplun and from there you can take public transport to reach to this village.
Where to stay in Velas
This place don’t have any Hotel or resort. The best part of this place is the Stay with the Villagers in their houses and eat with them which they will prepare for you. This is their one of the earning source for their livinghood. They charge very nominal for the same and you will feel that you are home when you will stay with them.
What to see and where to visit in Velas
Velas Doesn't have much places to visit but yes, the most important place is the Velas beach where you will be witnessing the Olive Ridley sea Turtle Coming out of their Egg Shells and it happens only from November to March mid maximum.
The Female Turtles comes to this place in the month of Oct and leave their eggs on this beach. After the leaving their eggs on this beach, the Preservation team preserve all the eggs and dig the sea sand and put the eggs in that for the hatching. It takes 45 -60 days to hatch for the eggs.
Its little heartening and sad that any of the baby Olive Ridley Turtle ever gets to meet with its mother in his/her lifetime. I was disheartened after knowing this and little sad also but this is how almighty decided and created them.
The Team make a big boundary cage for them where they preserve the egg so any animal like dog or any other animal should not eat the eggs and they protect the eggs with full of enthusiasm and responsibility. When the hatching starts, the tourists starts coming to this place and many of the tourist and people who know about this place, waits to visit here every year.
So the team who handles the whole process checks the whether the hatching or breaking the eggs and have they come out of shells. it happens twice every day after the first hatching starts. Its crowded on weekends as maximum visitors and tourist comes on weekends with family. The team leader explains about the turtles and what precautions all of the the visitor to take when they will release the turtles in the sea. After they come out from the Egg shells, the team release the turtles in the sea which is their home.
For this moment everybody gets ready and run towards the sea to grab their space to sit and click and same i did and got place once to capture them. They put the turtles in the tokri and take them near to sea and release them on ground approximately 50 feet away from the sea. When they are on ground they smells and moves towards the sea with their tiny legs and hands and it is most amazing view i have ever seen. It takes 15-20 mins to reach them in to see and after they get in to see, nobody can go in to the sea for half n hour they might get back due to waves, and if somebody will be in the sea, they might get crush by anyone’s foot. So that's the instruction which team leader gives every time they talk in that cage.
It was really an amazing experience to see the Olive Ridley Sea Turtles and i can never forget those tiny turtles moving towards their home.
But on the other side it is sad that they never get to meet with their parents in their life time.
How's the experience of staying with a family in village
Staying with a family in village was the most amazing experience. They welcomed with warmth and served the food with love. They made the most delicious food and was authentic food which you can have in Maharashtra. The food was so pure. The fragrances of the Species used in preparations was just loving. All the ladies in the house makes the food and serves to all the people who visits.
They will arrange the tour also to Velas turtle festival if you will ask them and also will help you to guide you for other places in and around the Velas. They will arrange the bedding for you for your sleep in their houses and its quite comfortable and I must say that I had a very sound and relaxed sleep in the fresh air of the village after having a great pure meal.
So ts a must visit place during the Turtle Festival and highly recommended.
I came with so many good memories captured in the camera which you can check on my you tube channel and also here in the below video.