Murter children take part in the second treasure hunt.

Piše: Ivana Marin — 13. April, 2016.

Those who found themselves at the Čigrađa cove on April 2 could only wonder and observe a group of children who were running around the cove and searching for something. Although you could have thought that they were just playing, they were actually searching for treasure and the children were all members of the Murter eco patrol.

During this activity children learned about sea turtles in the Adriatic Sea, about their importance for the eco system and the threat they encounter.

Sea turtles, including their most common representative in the Adriatic Sea, loggerhead turtles, have been on the world list of endangered animals for long time. The Adriatic is one of the two most important nourishment and hibernation areas for loggerhead turtles in the Mediterranean. Population that inhabits the Adriatic is part of the population that breeds in Greece. Despite the fact that sea turtles in Croatia are protected by the law, it is estimated that each year about 2,500 loggerhead turtles are accidentally caught. Death in fishing nets was found to be the most common cause of death. These animals breathe with the lungs and they have to go to the surface to get air, but when they get entangled in the nets, due to lack of the oxygen they die.

By watching presentation at the Argonauta office kids had an opportunity to learn about the biology and evolution of sea turtles, migratory habits of the Adriatic population, the importance for the ecosystem, the reasons for vulnerability and how to protect sea turtles in Croatia and in the world.

Treasure hunt started. Red and blue team received treasure maps. On the maps kids could have find the locations of hidden tasks and three cardboard turtle on which they could have find the coordinates of the place where the treasure was hidden. The tasks that were waiting for them were diverse; they had to make a turtle out of the objects from nature, “Tortoise quiz”, migration cycle in the Mediterranean Sea and a rebus.

As the teams approached the location of a hidden treasure, tensions were rising. Throughout the quest the teams were equal. With the help of coordinates on cardboard turtles and applications for mobile phone that was showing the coordinates children found the location of hidden treasure. Hidden treasure was the nest of sea turtle with chocolate eggs. We couldn’t declare a winner because the red and blue team find the location at the same time. After a successful search, with mouth smeared with chocolate, members of eco patrol along with facilitators set off for a walk along the sea cost enjoying a spring day on the island full of mysteries.

Next Saturday members of the Murter eco patrol will become scientists and they will learn about climate change and acidification of the sea through different experiments.

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