Turtle Conservation Project (TCP) first arrived in Rekawa in 1993, 100% of the turtle eggs laid on the beach were illegally collected and sold in nearby towns by Rekawa village men. In 1996, Rekawa became the site of Sri Lanka’s first community-based marine turtle research and nest protection programmes. Former poachers as well as the locals of the village have been made tour guides and professional turtle-watchers. The process does take expertise. The massive turtles are slow in their journey on to the shore and easily frightened away. However once they start to lay the eggs, the trance-like state they fall into allows visitors to observe them freely. The peak nesting season is from February to July. Visitors to the beach are treated to a presentation on the nature of the marine turtles, their nesting habits and their poaching.
Rekawa turtle conservation project
Rekawa is one of the well-known places in the world for turtle conservation. Five species of marine turtles visit the shores to lay and nest their eggs and the Rekawa village has managed to turn what was once a mass poaching of eggs into a profitable turtle watching programme. Rekawa is a very picturesque village on the south coast of Sri Lanka. The nearby beach is one of Sri Lanka's most important green turtle rookeries. Olive-ridley and Leatherback turtles also nest there, as well as the occasional Hawksbill and Loggerhead turtle.