The Royal Thai Navy released 800 turtles and 80,000 fish into Sattahip Bay to honor HM Queen Sirikit as she celebrates the start of her 80th year.
Adm. Narong Thesvikaal, commander of the Royal Thai Fleet, presided over the release of the mostly juvenile green turtles at the Sea Turtle Conservation Center Aug. 11, a day before the queen’s 79th birthday. More than 2,500 navy personnel, area residents, public officials and celebrities turned out to help set free the reptiles.
Adm. Narong Thesvikaal, commander of the Royal Thai Fleet, presides over the release of a female green turtle it has nursed for 12 years.
While most of the turtles were still babies, the center did set free a female green turtle it has nursed for 12 years. Green turtles reach mating age at 16 years.
The group also set free thousands of tropical fish.
The Sea Turtle Conservation Center regularly releases hundreds of turtles into the wild to mark the birthdays of the royal couple. The remainder of the year it rescues turtle eggs from nearby islands and raises them in captivity until they have a fighting chance to survive and revive the endangered species.