One In 100,000

Maldives Promotion House – Everyone wants to make a change. Some of us just lay back and wait until the next big thing hits us smack in the face, and some of us don’t. But those few are like drops of water in a desert. Tiny Island Volunteers is a company involved in turtle conservation in Maldives. The organization was initially geared towards bringing in foreign volunteers for the islands. However they also run Tiny Island Conservation which is their Maldivian NGO. The conservation works in collaboration with other island NGOs like Naifaru Juvenile and Velidhoo Future Foundation.

Through their hard work their achievements have gone beyond mere marine conservation. One of their most recent accomplishments is the rescuing of a baby albino sea turtle. The tiny white critter which had been kept in a local home in Noonu Atoll Maafaru was brought to their Marine Conservation Centre, after the locals decided that they were unable to offer the much needed care.

Experts believe that the birth of albino turtles is so rare that from every 100,000 sea turtles only one will be born without their protective dark camouflage. Albino turtles have a rare hereditary disease which disables it from producing melanin, the substance which gives the skin the darker colour.

Due to the lack of its protective camouflage, albino turtles have little protection against predators. According to experts baby albino turtles have virtually no chance of survival in its natural habitat. However the Tiny Island Volunteers hope that as the turtle grows and the protective shell hardens, its survivability will increases.

Tiny Island Volunteers plan on keeping the albino turtle, aptly named as ‘Dhon Dhooni’ which translates to ‘White Bird’, in their conservation centre to provide the required nurturing. “Of course he will be placed in our specially developed sea station in about a month to enable him to adjust to sea conditions, learn to dive and also feed himself,” Tiny Island Volunteers said.

“We are planning to conduct marine conservation and turtle conservation workshops on islands across the atoll and nearby atolls every two weeks and also invite participating groups to spend a weekend with us at the Tiny Island community Conservation centre,” CEO of Tiny Island Volunteers, Hana Thompson said.

Dhon Dhooni is just one turtle. But this symbol of hope, this tiny turtle, has become a big celebrity. We at Maldives Promotion House hope that it will rekindle that passion to protect Maldives, our home, and to preserve these beautiful creatures. After all they are part of what makes Maldives perfect.

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