Picked this up off www.howies.co.uk today. If Turtles are finding there way to Scotland and Wales there’s a small possibility that one might wash up here too. Interestingly, last summer we were approached by a gentleman who has been researching sea turtles around the British waters for some years, he asked to us to keep a record and contact him if there were any sitings. So if you do happen across a sea turtle around our coast, please could you also let us know as well as the Marine Conservation Society…
Today the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is urging British beach walkers to look out for stranded marine turtles after three of the endangered reptiles washed up on beaches in Wales and Scotland since the end of December. Strong south-westerly winds forecast for Scotland, Wales and the South West this week may bring in more turtles, which, if found alive, can be rescued and rehabilitated back to full health.
The strandings started when a juvenile loggerhead turtle washed up dead at Ardnave on the island of Islay on the 29th December. Shortly afterwards the second turtle, another dead juvenile loggerhead, was recovered by staff from the Islay and Jura Seal Sanctuary after it washed up near Ardbeg, Islay on New Year?s Day. The third turtle was a rare Kemp?s ridley turtle that washed up alive at Porth Ceiriad nr. Abersoch on the Lleyn Peninsula on the 3rd of January. This small juvenile turtle was recovered by the RSPCA and driven by Marine Environmental Monitoring to the Weymouth SeaLife Centre, where, sadly, it died a few days later.
?Each winter strong winds seem to blow stray juvenile turtles into our chilly seas. They can?t stand the cold weather, which shuts them down and they eventually wash up on our shores,? said Peter Richardson, MCS Species Policy Officer, ?When they wash up they are so moribund that to the casual observer they may appear to be dead, but actually they may still be alive, and with expert care can be rescued and nurtured back to health to make a full recovery. Under no circumstances should these turtles be put back into the sea, as this will certainly kill them. With strong winds forecast this week we urge UK beach walkers to be vigilant and immediately report any turtles they encounter to the RSPCA.?
MCS is urging anyone who walks or works on UK beaches to look out for stranded turtles this winter and immediately report them to the RSPCA on 08705 555999 or to Marine Environmental Monitoring (MEM) on 01348 875000. Live turtles should not be put back in the sea, but placed in a dry, sheltered place until animal welfare experts can collect them for rehabilitation. Obviously dead stranded turtles should also be reported to MEM or online at HYPERLINK “http://www.mcsuk.org/” www.mcsuk.org where information and photographs are available to help identification.