Each year, sea turtles return to Banderas Bay to lay their eggs in the same spot where they were born. On average, the spawning season begins in June and lasts through December. There are seven different species of sea turtles, and six of these species lay their eggs in Mexico each year. If you find yourself in the area, make sure to book a tour on the Marigalante pirate ship, too. It’s a Puerto Vallarta top tour that the whole family will love. In the meantime, read more below about the annual migration of sea turtles to Banderas Bay.

Sea Turtles Return to Banderas Bay

Sea turtles migrate through the ocean each year until they reach the location of their birth. For turtles born in Banderas Bay, the adult female sea turtles return to the area to lay their own eggs. Spawning season occurs between June through December. Peak season occurs during the months of August and September. When baby turtles are ready to hatch, they break their shells and climb up from nests underneath the sand. Then, they slowly crawl across the beach towards the sea. In Banderas Bay, the regular collection of sea turtle eggs from nests helps improve the chances of baby sea turtles reaching the sea. The number of sea turtles that lay their eggs in the area changes each year. However, they are an important part of the local ecosystem that needs our help to protect them. 

3000 Sea Turtle Nests

The process begins when a female sea turtle decides where to lay her eggs. There, she will bury her eggs in the sand where they will incubate for about 50 days. After the 50 day incubation period has ended, the eggs will be ready to hatch.  In Puerto Vallarta and around Mexico, sea turtle preservation groups collect eggs from nests found on the beach. Next, the eggs are then re-buried in protected areas to protect them from humans and natural predators. In Mexico, natural predators include skunks, raccoons, seagulls, foxes, ravens, crows, and herons. Humans have been known to steal sea turtle eggs and or baby turtles in order to sell them for a profit. This year, more than 3,000 turtle nests are expected in Banderas Bay. In the past, up to 70 or 80 nests have been registered in a single night. An average of 100 eggs are collected from each nest, and around 85 percent will hatch. 

Time to Hatch!

When it’s time to hatch, the babies crack open their shells. Next, they break through the shell and start crawling towards the water. Remember, volunteers and conservationists regularly collect sea turtle eggs to improve the chances of baby sea turtle babies surviving. Headed to Puerto Vallarta in the next few months? If so, you should take part in a sea turtle hatching experience. Each evening at sunset, new baby turtles are released to the sea. Likewise, some sea turtle protected nests are available to be viewed by the public during the day. Contact local organizers to see when you can attend a sea turtle hatching on your next visit to Puerto Vallarta.  

It’s sea turtle hatching time in Mexico right now! If you want the best tour in Puerto Vallarta, book your tickets for the Marigalante pirate ship adventure. They have stringent health protocols in place to keep guests safe too. Remember, plan a vacation to Mexico soon so you can see sea turtles hatching in person. Thousands of sea turtles are expected to return to Banderas Bay to lay their turtle eggs. Don’t miss the chance to attend a sea turtle release as it is a unique experience that you won’t soon forget.