FIRST PHOTO: A baby hawksbill and magnifying glass make the rounds to give beachgoers a closer look Friday before the turtle was placed on the sand and made a run for the ocean waves.
SECOND PHOTO: Wildlife experts uncovered a hawksbill turtle nest Friday at Makena's Oneloa Beach, popularly known as Big Beach, to expose about 150 healthy, flipper-flapping baby turtles.
THIRD PHOTO: A closer look at a baby hawksbill
The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photo
FOURTH PHOTO: A crowd of about 50 people circled the site to watch as the latest hopes for the critically endangered species were removed one at a time by state aquatic biologist Skippy Hau and handed over to Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge Manager Glynnis Nakai, who placed them in a plastic tub for safekeeping. About a dozen of the turtles were released into the ocean at sunset while the rest were held for observation and will be released later.
FIFTH PHOTO: Hau, Nakai and Hawksbill Recovery Project Coordinator Cheryl King work to uncover the nest. King said the mother Hawksbill laid three nests at the beach this year. Thanks to a satellite tracking device placed on the mother turtle's back, King said, they know the well-traveled momma is now off the coast of Kauai. King said the quality of Makena's sand makes it an ideal place for turtles to nest.