A mass hatching of Giant South American river turtles occurs each year during the dry season in Brazil's Abufari Biological Reserve. The event produces hundreds of thousands of turtle hatchlings.
Thousands of Turtles
Researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society and the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation estimated that some 210,000 turtles hatched in the recent dry season. This image was released on Feb. 10, 2014.
A Giant South American river turtle hatchling emerges from its shell.
The researchers used a fence to contain the turtle hatchlings emerging from identified nests. The scientists marked and released a total of 15,000 hatchlings in the space of several days, which helped them estimate the population size.
The Giant South American river turtle is the largest member of the side-necked turtle family. Adults can grow up to nearly 3 feet (1 meter) in length.