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Tale of the tape: a tanu turtle that came ashore in Patong today

Update: Turtle Lands in Patong, Then Vanishes

Friday, July 31, 2009
A LARGE TURTLE made its way to shore in Patong today, much to the surprise of an early-rising beach boy who discovered the creature on the sand, close to Loma Park.

As with so many Patong stories, there was a happy beginning, hope for a fresh start, followed by a sad ending.

Word quickly spread. There was some elation at the news that a turtle had been found in Patong, so often criticised for the quality of its water and the way some visitors are treated.

The sad ending eventually caught up with the happy beginning, but only after the turtle was mistakenly carted away as trash.

For sometime after she arrived on Patong's shores, the turtle had died.

Jaruj Seriruk of the Marine Animal Rescue service eventually tracked down the creature and claimed her body for research, with the prospect of the turtle having at least a little dignity in death.

The tanu turtle is an Andaman species and it's entirely possible that she was driven by instinct to return to a place which which she had once been familiar.

Has she deposited eggs on a Phuket beach in her 20 years? Were there close calls over time with fishing trawlers and human predators?

Nobody can say.

What's known is that she was large and beautiful, measuring 77 centimetres from head to tail and with a shell that was 73 centimetres broad.

Along the shore, conveying the impression that turtles are regular guests at Patong beach, are replica turtles similar in size to the one that came ashore today.

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Wednesday January 19, 2022
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa

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