Joanne, whatʼs new at the Rescue Centre (February 2016)?
Our volunteer at the Rescue Centre Joanne Stournara updates us on the events from 1-29 February 2016.
Turtles currently being treated: 23
During the month of February 2016, we are happy to report that there were NO new turtle arrivals AND NO deaths. So, here is some recent news about the turtles currently being treated at the RC.
‘Artemis’, the turtle who received a lot of publicity in January after being rescued along with a group of refugees on an uninhabited Greek island and who was later transported by Aegean Airlines to Athens (see previous report for details), is improving. She has started to eat on her own, which is a good sign.
‘Stella’, (carapace length 70 cm, weight 40 kilos) who came from Lesbos in 2014 with a head injury, has started to eat on her own, which is an indication that she is improving.
‘Retsina’, a green turtle (carapace length 46 cm, weighing 10.5 kilos), is now starting to eat on her own. Hopefully, she will continue to improve.
‘Persa’ is a beautiful, big loggerhead who arrived with a head injury. Because of the injury, her neck was twisted to one side. The RC staff tried partially covering her tank so that she would be protected from the sights and sounds around her, and it has greatly helped her. It seems to have relaxed her and relieved the stress she was experienced, and her neck has now gradually straightened out. (We did not want to disturb her, so we don’t have a recent picture of her right now.)
‘Sunny’, (67 cm carapace length, weighing 29 kilos), who came to the RC in August 2015 with a missing flipper and carapace injuries, possibly caused by a propeller. The left side of her carapace was severely damaged and is being held together by a series of screws and wires inserted by the veterinarian in order to keep the carapace stable when the turtle moves.
‘Dimitris-Pavlos’, the biggest turtle at the RC in 2015, (carapace length 92 cm, weight 87 kilos), had to be moved indoors to a smaller tank to protect him from the winter cold temperatures. He spends most of his time on the bottom of the tank and is still being tubefed. In order to lift him from his tank in order to clean and treat him, the volunteers put together a special device for lifting and moving him in a way which causes him as little stress and discomfort as possible. As soon as weather conditions permit, he will be moved once again to a large, outdoor tank, where he should be more comfortable.
An exhibition of items recovered from our turtles – i.e. hooks of all sizes, lines of all lengths, pieces of plastic, and even a pair of light sticks – is now on display at the RC. Be sure to stop by and see the exhibit.
Did you know...
For a number of years, ARCHELON has been studying turtles in Amvrakikos Bay, a protected bay which is a favorite spot of sea turtles. In 2002, ARCHELON initiated its first telemetry project. This was part of an EU co-funded LIFE-Nature project conducted by ETANAM, the management agency of Amvrakikos Bay. Satellite transmitters were attached to turtles’ carapaces, and their movements were monitored and mapped by seaturtle.org. Since then, whenever funding is available, other turtles have had transmitters attached and are tracked. At the moment, only one turtle, named ‘Alan’ is still transmitting. For a map of his movement, see: http://www.seaturtle.org/tracking/index.shtml?tag_id=127977
For more information about this project, see these two pages on the ARCHELON website: http://www.archelon.gr/eng/pro_life_telemetry.php?row=row4
If you would to help ARCHELON continue this project, you can become a sponsor of one the Amvrakikos Bay turtles. For details, see http://www.archelon.gr/eng/Sponsor_Amvrakikos_turtle.php?row=row9.
If you are interested in working as a volunteer at Amvrakikos Bay, please contact Theoni Karkoulia, Volunteers Officer & E.V.S. Project Coordinator, at email@example.com or 30-210-5231342.