Thursday, May 21, 2015

Turtle Calling Ritual in Tambrauw Regency

Leatherback turtle landed at Jen Womom beach of Tambrauw regency in West Papua to lay eggs
Leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)  is the largest turtle species in the whole sea world. This marine animal is facing extinction due to continuous hunting for its eggs by human, choking from drifting plastic bag that it considers as jelly fish and other natural predators (soa-soa lizard and wild pigs), sharks in its early age.
To raise awareness about the importance of protecting turtles, local community leaders with the support of volunteers from WWF, Dept. of Maritime and Fishery Affairs and local government authorities of Tambrauw regency will conduct The Traditional Ritual for the Calling of Leatherback Turtles  on 25 June 2015. The traditional ritual is open to everybody who is interested in watching the turtles at Jen Womom beach lay their eggs.

Batu Kapal beach near Sausapor town of Tambrauw regency
Please, study the following map for the location of Sausapor town and Jen Womom beach
Sausapor town is the capital of Tambrauw regency and Jen Womom beach is the site where leatherback turtles land to lay their eggs.
Location of Sausapor townrelative to the map of Indonesia
How to get there?
  • First fly from your country to Jakarta city.
  • After getting Visa On Arrival, continue your trip to Sorong city by flying with Garuda, or Sriwijaya Air, or Express Air
  • When you have arrived in Sorong city, continue your trip to Sausapor town by passenger boats KMSunlia and KMAve Maria (ticket price is 100,000 to 150,000 rupiahs for economy class rupiahs or approximately 8 to 12 US dollars per person). The boat leaves Sorong city (from Pelabuhan Rakyat) for Sausapor town on Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Sausapor town is located in the northern coast of the bird's head region of West Papua.
  • Make sure that you arrive in Sausapor town before 25 June 2015 so that you will get free transport to Jen Womom beach during the festival. 
  • Accommodation is free (just go to the office of WWF in Sausapor town and meet Ronny Tethool or Anis Sundoi and say that you get the info from Charles Roring's blog on the internet).
Batu Kapal beach near Sausapor town during sunset time
Leatherback and other turtles species land along the beach of Tambrauw regency from May to December so, you can still go there to see the turtles during those months.
Tropical Rainforest Ecosystem
Tambrauw regency has got a lot of places that are potential to be developed for tourism. Some of them are numerous world class surf spots, pristine rainforest ecosystem, wreckages left by US troops after World War II.
Birdwatching in Viem
Viem is a local term for a site located deep in the jungle of Tambrauw mountains where warm salty water comes out of the ground. Every morning and before sunset, various species of birds land on the ground to drink until they get drunk. Birds are not the only animals that can be seen in the Viem. When I visited several Viems in Aiwatar hill of District Senopi, I saw a lot of deers, kangaroo and wild cows in the vicinity. I highly recommend the site for all avid birdwatchers who want to see the wealth of New Guinea's avifauna
If you are interested in visiting Tambrauw regency, please, contact me (Charles Roring) by email to: or cell phone: 006281332245180

FYI: During World War II, US forces landed on Sansapor and its nearby coastal area and islands as part of their campaign in fighting the Japanese forces in the Pacific. Today, the town's spelling has experienced slight change from Sansapor to Sausapor.