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Ascension Island

One of the stranger places to visit on this planet

; where the functionality of the military and communication installations dictate the landscape. Landscape...it's more a moonscape, the MARS rover was tested in this desolate place, where the bare vulcanic rock are the make-up of the island. Everywhere you can see there are arrays of long-range and satellite communication antenna's. There are no inhabitants on the island, the complete population consists of contractors. In stark contrast with this deserted place are the beaches, long white sanded beaches with an abundance of wildlife.

Especially at night the beach is the place to be, during these hours the Green Turtle makes it way on to the land to lay her eggs. She digs a man-size hole in the beach and afterwards covers it again with sand, to protect her precious load. The pits are of considerable size, any German tourist would have been proud of himself to leave such a piece of work on a Dutch beach.

After sundown we set off from Europa and met researchers from the conservation center who guided us to the beach. We found hundreds of little turtles hatching from their small round ping-pong-ball like eggs. A very special moment to witness, we helped several small ones on their way to the water. And even with our help the odds are against them, only one out of every thousand will survive, before they will make their first landfall again one starry night in the year 2050.

Written by:
Ruud | 1st Mate

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