Ocean Cay has welcomed its first loggerhead turtle hatchings thanks to the private island’s rich marine ecosystem, an important aspect of the island located in the Bahamas. The hatchings have come from more than six nests around the cruise line’s private island.
Turtle Hatchings Flourish at Ocean Cay Marine Reserve
Some great news coming from MSC Cruises’ private island of Ocean Cay in the Bahamas, with many hatchings now flourishing. The cruise line has welcomed loggerhead sea hatchings heading into the surrounding waters from more than six nests around the island.
Linden Coppell, MSC Cruises’ Sustainability Director, said: “We are all absolutely thrilled to see Loggerhead turtles come to Ocean Cay’s beaches to lay eggs so soon. This can take many years to happen with a newly restored ecosystem and we weren’t certain that they would come or when. We hope to see many more hatchlings in future nesting seasons and that these recent arrivals return to Ocean Cay when the time comes for them to nest.”
A big focus is the environmental impact on marine life, and the cruise line says that guests are enjoying a thriving habitat ashore and in the surrounding waters. Ocean Cay features 64 square miles of protected waters, and previously it was an industrial sand excavation site. Since the island opened by the cruise line in 2019, it has progressively transformed into a lush tropical paradise with a rich marine ecosystem.
Since the loggerhead nests were found, the aim has been to monitor them regularly to ensure they have remained protected. It does not stop there, and procedures are in place to encourage turtles, particularly during egg-laying season.
Ocean Cay is working on the natural aspect rather than introducing grand new islands features like Royal Caribbean’s Perfect Day at CocoCay private island. One priority is the restoration of the coral, which is an integral part of the marine ecosystem. It’s not just loggerhead sea turtles thriving around the island. There are also Green and Hawksbill turtles.
There is also a freshwater wetland at Ocean Cay that supports the avian population, including several different bird species such as breeding pairs, a resident burrowing owl, and an increase in migrating populations.
During the suspension of operations, guests have not been able to enjoy the natural beauty of Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve. Still, two MSC cruise ships have already restarted operations from Florida, including calls to the island.