Yoshi the Loggerhead Turtle was released in December last year and has travelled far but it looks like she might be heading back to South African waters.
Yoshi was rescued from a boat in Table Bay Harbour by local authorities in 1996. She had been caught in a trawler’s fishing net. The aquarium guessed that she was about 3-5 years old at the time and about the size of a dinner plate. She was released at the age of 26 years old.
Yoshi had been a resident in the I&J tank for years and loved swimming up to the glass to get a look at all the visitors. Since her release, we have followed her journey
In April of this year, 103 days after her release, we shared her tracking and it showed she was in the Atlantic just off the Skeleton coast, even though her natural habitat is the warmer waters of Natal.
“We expected her to head east – but she had different plans. She decided to explore the ocean and has done just that for the last 12 months. She has travelled 8 600 kilometres since her release and has crossed borders 4 times, passing Namibia and Angola after which she turned around in June and is currently about 680 kilometres west of Hondeklipbaai on the South African west coast.
She is currently in a very mild 19°C and it certainly appears as if she is heading back towards the southern tip of Africa. The closest loggerhead nesting sites are about 3 500 kilometres from Yoshi’s current location, on the Kwa-Zulu Natal northern coast.
Loggerhead females nest on or near the beaches where they hatched from, so we are hoping that Yoshi will show us where she started out her incredible life before her satellite tag stops transmitting.” – Two Oceans Aquarium
Now it seems she is heading home and hopefully, that means she is ready to start nesting and there will be many more little Yoshi’s gracing our waters.