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Rescue Center News

Joanne, whatʼs new at the Rescue Centre (August 2016)?

Our volunteer at the Rescue Centre Joanne Stournara updates us on the events from 1-31 August 2016.

As usual, August is a very busy month at the RC, and all the tanks are filled with sick or injured turtles. However, a number of turtles treated over the winter have recovered and will be released in the near future. Both the long-term volunteers from abroad and the local day volunteers have been working extremely hard to transport the new arrivals from the port or bus terminal, giving first aid and daily treatments, cleaning tanks, preparing their food, monitoring their progress, and all the other jobs involved in keeping the RC up and running. Many thanks to them all for their dedication, hard work, and concern for the turtles.

Number of turtles being treated at the RC at the end of August 2016: 38

 

Turtle News

Arrivals

Patrick’, a loggerhead whose carapace length is 55.1 cm and who weighs 21.5 kilos, arrived at the RC on 2 August 2016. The turtle, who was found by the ARCHELON Amvrakikos Field Project team, has a broken flipper and a head injury. Nothing can be done to repair the flipper injury, but he seems to be able to cope with the difficulties it cause quite well, and hopefully will be released soon.

Triantafillos’ (which means ‘rose’ in English), arrived at the RC on 8 August 2016 from Porto Heli (Peloponnese). The loggerhead, (carapace length 33.5 and weight 4.0 kilos), is being treated for pneumonia.

Costas’ arrived at the RC on 12 August 16 from Ikaria with an ingested hook(s?). X-rays reveal what appears to be a two-ended hook, which more likely will turn out to be two separate hooks. He is scheduled to receive surgery to remove the hook. The loggerhead’s carapace measures 50.3 cm and he weighs 17.5 kilos. More information will be available after the surgery is performed.

Tinos’, a loggerhead with a carapace length of 62.0 cm and weighing 26 kilos, arrived at the RC on 13 August 2016 with an ingested hook. He is very fortunate because the hook was located in his mouth and was able to be removed without surgery by Pavlo, the Rescue Network Coordinator.

Vassilis’ arrived at the RC on 14 August 2016 from Nea Marmara (Chalkidiki) with an ingested hook. He was found stranded on the beach at night by a local resident Vassilis and his two children. The loggerhead’s carapace measures 31.9 cm, and he weighs 4.0 kilos. The hook was surgically removed on the 25th of August. The turtle is recovering well and has started eating.

Paria’, a loggerhead who arrived from Paros on 16 August 2016, with a carapace injury caused by a collision with a propeller. Her carapace measures 64.5 cm and she weighs 33.0 kilos. The cut is so deep in one place that you can see her spinal column. She is missing two vertebrae, but despite that, she is somehow managing to dive, eat and swim normally. Her wound is being treated to avoid infection.

Salva’ arrived on 20 August 2016 from the nearby island of Kea/Angistri, with an ingested hook, which will have to be surgically removed. The small loggerhead has a carapace length of 30.7cm and weighs just 4 kilos.

Theo’, a small loggerhead whose carapace length is 32.1 kilos and weighs 4.5 kilos, arrived from Skiathos on 23rd August with an ingested hook, which was surgically removed on 25 August. He was transported to Athens by Olympic Air.

Haroula’, a loggerhead who is the smallest turtle currently being treated at the RC, arrived on 23 August 2016 from Nea Moudania (Chalkidiki). The turtle had a fishing line tightly wrapped around her neck and front flippers, which unfortunately cut deep into her body. She is being treated, but it is too early to tell how she will do. The injured turtle was reported to the port police by a private citizen, but in order to transport the turtle as quickly as possible, Stelios, a member of the ARCHELON Rescue Network. The turtle was sent to the Veterinary University in Thessaloniki for first aid, and then sent to the RC.

Alexandra’, an adult loggerhead with a carapace length of 78.0 cm, 45.8 kg , was found by the Amvrakikos Management Agency, whose help is always appreciated. The turtle, which arrived at the RC on 31 August 2016 from Kataforko, has an old head injury which is causing her problems.

Michaela’ arrived at the RC on 30 August 2016 from Samos with a head injury intentionally caused by human action, very likely caused by a screwdriver. 73.5 cm and weight 38 kg.

 

Deaths

We are very happy to report that none of the turtles died in August.

 

Releases

There were three releases in August 2016:

Nikos’, a loggerhead who had arrived on 30 March 2013 from Chios with a head injury, was released from the Kotychi-Strofilia Wetlands National Park in the Peloponnese on 21 August 2016, with the help of the Park’s management staff. (For more information about the Park, see their website http://www.strofylianationalpark.gr/index.php/en/)

Zacharias’, a loggerhead who had arrived from Evia on 2 January 2015 with a head injury, was released into the Saronic Gulf on 8 August 2016 from a boat in the Anavissos area.

Dimitrios-Pavlos’, the largest loggerhead treated at the RC in 2015, had arrived on 23 October 2015 from Preveza with a head injury, was released in Kyparissia on 29 August 2016, in collaboration with the Costa Navarino resort. See the article and photos at: http://www.archelon.gr/contents/ourdeltia.php?row=row10&nid=858 (Note: the article is available only in Greek, but even if you can’t read the article, you can still enjoy the photos!)

 

Special thanks to

Olympic Air for helping to save ‘Theo’.

Amvrakikos Management Agency (for information and photos about this protected area, see http://www.amvrakikos.eu/english/foreas.pdf)

Stelios, a dedicated member of the ARCHELON Rescue Network, who always finds time to help when it is needed.

To all the different people who given time, energy and care to the turtles, which made it possible to save them.

 

Did you know ...

The ARCHELON Rescue Centre is piloting an enrichment program to document turtle behaviour. Various ‘structures’ (for example, a wooden construction resembling a dock), balls, objects which have pieces of fish sticking out, etc. are added to the big tanks both to provide something for the turtles to do but, more importantly, to observe what they do when faced with a challenge. The project is still in its early stages, but you can see some of the items in the big tanks if you visit the Centre.

 

Joanne Stournara

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