Celebrate Turtle Week with Two Oceans Aquarium

Posted on 22 May 2019

This week, 20-25 May, is Turtle Week and the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town will be celebrating with a week filled with activities and fun games for both children and adults to enjoy.

Turtle Flight / Photographer: David Doubilet. Image: Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2015

We turtally love turtles, and today we celebrate all everything awesome about them, and the important role they play in our ocean environments. For example, did you know that Loggerheads and Leatherbacks can swim distances between 10,000 to 16,000 kilometres in their lifetime?

Continually threatened by pollution such as plastic and other waste that washes up in the ocean, humans have to do their best to look after turtles and preserve their ocean homes.

Turtles were around long before us, including many other reptiles. There are seven different turtle species on the planet, and all but two of these species visit South African shores:

– Loggerhead (Caretta caretta, vulnerable)

– Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea, vulnerable)

– Green (Chelonia mydas, endangered)

– Hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricate, critically endangered)

– Olive Ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea, vulnerable)

Africa on BBC Knowledge, episode 4: Cape

Image: Katharina Brown, BBC – supplied

Unfortunately all five species are endangered in some way or another, and are listed on the IUCN Red List.

According to the World Wide Fund for Nature, turtles are threatened by fishing nets (which they can get caught in), climate change, habitat loss, and illegal trades and consumption for superstitious or other beliefs.

Every day this week there’ll be special activities for young kiddies, including:

– I&J Ocean Exhibit every day at 2pm – to learn about turtles’ journeys back into the wild

– I&J Ocean Exhibit feeding daily at 12pm

– I Love Turtles puppet show at 10.30am, 1.30pm and 3.30pm, daily at the I&J Children’s Play Centre

Special events this week:

Wednesday 23 May – World Turtle Day

Today and this entire week you can get in on the fun and festivities. There are some cool competitions for kids, too.

Thursday 24 May – Screening of Deep Blue\Middle C

This documentary has been described as ‘mind-bending’ and is directed by filmmaker Bryan Little, who spent 10 days and nights reconnecting with the wild and South Africa’s wild coast. The proceeds from ticket sales for this event benefit the Turtle Rescue Programme from the Two Oceans Aquarium’s Education Foundation.

Thursday 25 May – Trash Bash at Monwabisi Beach, Khayelitsha, 9am-11am

Tackle ocean litter and have fun together to protect the Cape’s beaches.

Thursday 25 May Turtally Awesome Members’ Family Sleepover

There are still spots available for the members’ sleepover, from 6.30pm to 8am on Sunday 26 May.

Head over to the Two Oceans Aquarium site for more details or give them a ring on 0214183823.

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