10 things you didn’t know about Bundaberg’s turtle hatchling season
- Mon Repos Beach, managed by the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service, on Bundaberg’s coastline on the Southern Great Barrier Reef
- Every year, thousands of tiny turtle hatchings make their way to the ocean on Mon Repos Beach.
- Clutches of eggs are usually laid from November until January each year, with hatchlings making an appearance between early January and March.
- Baby turtles take six to eight weeks to hatch before starting towards the sea.
- Baby sea turtles start at an adorable five to seven centimetres, but can grow to a whopping two metres long, as is the case for the leatherback turtle.
- The smallest sea turtle is the olive ridley turtle, which grows up to one metre in length.
- Hatchlings sprint across the sand to imprint the orientation of the Earth’s magnetic field, allowing them to return to the location they were born – even if they haven’t been back in 30 years!
- Out of every 1000 hatchlings, only one will survive to maturity. As a result, six out of seven sea turtle species worldwide are classified as threatened or endangered.
- Hatchlings weigh only 15 to 30 grams at birth – that’s the weight of roughly one tablespoon of sugar!
- Once they hit the water, the hatchings swim non-stop for several days to reach the East Australian Current or EAC: the turtle superhighway made famous in Finding Nemo.
What else to see and do when in Bundaberg
It may be a true bucket-list moment, but seeing turtle hatchlings is only one of Bundaberg’s hero experiences.
Walk through 127 years of history at the home of Australia’s most iconic amber liquid, Bundaberg Rum. After an $8.5-million upgrade, Bundaberg Rum Distillery’s latest tour offers visitors the opportunity to craft their own blend from a selection of new-release premium rums.
Hinkler Hall of Aviation
Australia’s pioneer solo aviator, Bert Hinkler, became world famous for his aviation efforts including his world record setting flight from England to Australia in 1928. Today, visitors can walk through Bert’s home – Hinkler House – relocated from Southampton England, sit in a replica of Bert’s original Avro Baby aircraft or even ‘take to the skies’ in an aircraft simulator.
The Bundaberg North Burnett region is already home to artisan makers of spirits, wines, beers, and brewed drinks, but July’s Winterfeast also brings 10 days of local produce-driven foodie experiences, natural encounters, island-hopping adventures and the charm of the Burnett hinterland.
Information on visiting Bundaberg
A 4.5-hour drive north of Brisbane on the Southern Great Barrier Reef, it’s where great begins!
* Mon Repos nightly turtle encounter tickets start from $6.50. To book your encounter and for more information visit Bundaberg region’s website.
* Hinkler Hall of Aviation is open every day; for more information click here.
* Read more on Bundaberg Rum Distillery’s tours and museum experience.