The Mai Khao Marine Turtle Foundation and its partners recently hosted the 7th annual Mai Khao Marine Turtle Release Ceremony which took place during the Songkran Festival on April 13, 2015 from 2.30 pm – 4.30 pm. The Phuket Vice Governor, Mr. Khajornkiet Rakpanichmanee was a guest of honour and participated The Thai New Year celebration at JW Marriott Phuket Resort & Spa. Furthermore, the Mai Khao Turtle Foundation also has organized the exclusive Turtle release programs on April 15 and 16 from 9 am – 10 am together with IUCN for this year. The event was supported by the Phuket Marine Biological Center and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Songkran Festival is also known as The Thai New Year and Sea turtles represent longevity in Thai culture and releasing animals to nature is believed to bring good luck to the participant. On this occasion, 30 new batch of rehabilitated green turtles stepped into the Andaman Sea, with thousand eyewitness of Phuket residents and hotel guests were cheering and waving them the farewell.
All monies have raised through donations during the event, it went towards supporting the Mai Khao Marine Turtle Foundation and its partners: the Phuket Marine Biological Centre’s injured Turtle Rehabilitation Program and the Third Naval Area Command’s Turtle Hatchery Program.
37 Turtles were released to the Andaman Sea as a significant sign of the Songkran Festival or Thai New Year on April 13 at JW Marriott Phuket Resort & Spa’s beachfront.
- (1st left – stand) Mr. Karl Hudson, Area Vice President SE, Marriott International
- (2nd left) Captain Sathaporn Wajarat, Deputy Director of Phuket’s Interanal Security Operations Command
- (3rd left) Mr. Khajornkiet Rakpanichmanee, Phuket Vice Governor
- (centre) Dr. Kongkiat Kittiwattanawong, Head of Endangered Species Unit, PMBC
- (3rd right) Mr. Uthit Limsakul, Assistant Director of TAT Phuket office
- (2nd right – stand) Mr. Vitoon Dechpramualpol, Intendent of Sirinart National Park
- (1st right-stand) Mr. Oriol Montal, General Manager, JW Marriott Phuket Resort & Spa
Mr. Khajornkiet Rakpanichmanee, Phuket Vice Governor gave an opening speech at the 7th annual Mai Khao Marine Turtle Release Ceremony on Songkran Day at JW Marriott Phuket Resort & Spa
Songkran Festival Celebration – The Rod Nam Dum Hua Ritual on Songkran day also known as the National Elderly day: Mrs. Lily Muttarak (right), Assistant House Keeping Manager was pouring fragrant water into Mr. Oriol Montal (left), General Manager’s palms as a gesture of humility and got for his blessings.