A recent spate of small turtles washing up on Australia’s eastern shores has highlighted concerns about marine debris by scientists and animal welfare groups.
Two turtles, one found on North Stradbroke Island in Queensland and a second found at Fingal Head NSW have triggered alarm bells.
Both animals were around 20cm long and died with guts choked with marine rubbish. ??”The first turtle was a tiny 22 cm green turtle brought into the University of Queensland’s Moreton Bay Research Station on North Stradbroke Island for care,” Station Education Officer, Dr Kathy Townsend said. ??”The emaciated immature female was extremely weak and severely dehydrated and was suffering from floating syndrome which is where food trapped by foreign material starts to decompose, leaking gases into the body cavity and causing the animal to float. ??”After dressing the turtle’s wounds and placing her on a drip, we kept her under observation over night. Unfortunately, she succumbed to her illness and died in the next morning.