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Turtle rescued at weekend dies despite BAMZ effort

Turtle rescue (Photograph by Sam Strangeways)

A turtle found stranded on a beach last weekend has died despite a major effort to save the animal, it was revealed last night.

Ian Walker, the principal curator at the Bermuda Aquarium Museum and Zoo, said the young green turtle found by members of the public on Cooper’s Island in St David’s on Sunday died the same night.

Dr Walker said he could not say for sure what killed the animal, but he said many turtles brought to BAMZ for care had been emaciated and riddled with parasites.

He added that some turtles have been brought in after they have eaten zoanthids – a type of sea anemone – possibly because of a shortage of seagrass.

Dr Walker said: “When the stinging toxin reaches their stomach, it basically puts them into a coma.

“They come to us unresponsive. If you don’t take an electrocardiogram, you would think they are dead.

“For us, in those cases, it’s just a waiting game for them to pass it out of their system and at that point they start to wake.”

Dr Walker praised the members of the public who contacted BAMZ about the animal because it would help scientists understand the problems they faced.

He said: “We have nine sea turtles at the hospital right now in recovery. One was brought in on Christmas day that is doing well.

“We have another one that came in before Christmas after it was hit by a boat – a minor injury from a boat strike is very lucky – but we think we will be able to treat and release it.”

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Published December 30, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated December 29, 2020 at 8:36 pm)

Turtle rescued at weekend dies despite BAMZ effort

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