Joanne, whatʼs new at the Rescue Centre?
Our volunteer at the Rescue Centre Joanne Stournara updates us on the events of the week between 6th July and 12th July 2012.
Volunteers who were taking care of ʽSavvasʼ, a small turtle who had come to the RC several months ago with two ingested hooks, were thrilled to find that he had managed to pass the second hook, which X-rays taken when he arrived had revealed was deep within his digestive system. He had received surgery to remove the first hook, which was lodged high up in his esophagus, and has been fed special pharmaceutical oil along with his food since then to help move the second hook through his system. His has been moved to one of the big outdoor tanks for monitoring, which means that if all continues to go well, he will be released shortly.
ʽNancyʼ, who had been recuperating from a head injury at the RC since 5th October 2011, was released on Wednesday. With the help of the people who had originally found and transported her to the RC, she was released at the same place where she had been found: Agia Anna on Evia. Many thanks to everyone involved in the operation, and our best wishes to ʽNancyʼ for a safe life in the sea.
After releasing ʽNancyʼ, the RC crew travelled to Agios Constantinos, where they picked up another turtle, ʽLoukiaʼ, who had been sent by ferry from Alonyssos. She had been found on Skiathos on 6th July and transported by the port police to Alonyssos, where she was given first aid by a team from MOm during the time ARCHELON RC Co-ordinator Pavlo Tsaros was at Amvrakikos Bay. ʽLoukiaʼ had been deliberately struck on the head by someone, but fortunately was rescued in time. She will be taken for X-rays to see whether she has ingested any hooks or line, and everything possible will be done to treat her head injury. Thanks to everyone involved in her rescue and care.
ʽAmaliaʼ arrived at the RC on 8th July from Aegina. The turtle, which has ingested a fishing line, was sent to us by The Hellenic Wildlife Rescue Centre (HPAZ). She will be X-rayed, examined and treated.
ʽTheodoulosʼ arrived at the RC on 11th July from Pireaus harbor, where he had been found swimming around. He is a small turtle, approximately 30 cm. Although he had no visible injuries, his body was covered with leeches, for which he has already received treatment. He will be X-rayed, monitored, and examined by our veterinarian to determine whether or not he has any other problems.
Unfortunately, ʽCalliope,ʼ did not survive. The turtle had been sent to the RC several weeks ago by the Veterinary College of Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, where she had been taken for emergency surgery and treatment after being found in Alexandroupolis with the top of her head split into four sections. Despite the dedicated efforts of everyone involved, her injuries were just too severe.
ʽPavloʼ, the turtle which had been brutally tortured and reported on last week, is managing to hold his own. Only time will tell what his fate will be.
RC Co-ordinator Pavlo Tsaros reports that the number of turtles captured and tagged this year at Amvrakikos Bay has greatly declined. This year, only 13 turtles were located and tagged in 3 days, compared to previous years, when the number was around 30 over the same period of time.
Visits from groups of US students in the People to People Ambassador Program are still in full swing. The program aims to increase studentsʼ cultural awareness by putting them in contact with different countries throughout the world, and the students we spoke to were enthusiastic about what they had learned from ARCHELON about the plight of sea turtles and the societyʼs work to protect the turtles and their habitats. A number of students said they would like to work as ARCHELON volunteers in the future and, since some of them come from areas where sea turtles nest and live, were very interested in the information they learned in the ARCHELON presentation and in talks with RC volunteers. Many thanks to them all for their help at the RC and for their support of ARCHELON.
Did you know...
The Amvrakikos Bay tagging project is an ongoing research project which grew out of the 2002 telemetry project. The area has been identified as a major foraging ground and developmental area for both loggerhead and green turtles. Researchers are able to collect data on the growth and migratory habits of the turtles studied. For more information about the project and how you can help, click here http://www.archelon.gr/eng/Sponsor_Amvrakikos_turtle.php?row=row9 . You can also watch a short 2010 video on youtube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=US&v=sygxNj61LKY