The Cape region is known for its breathtaking landscapes and diverse marine life. Unfortunately, the southeasterly winds can carry disoriented turtle hatchlings to the shores of False Bay. To promote marine conservation, the Two Oceans Aquarium has created a guide to help beachgoers take appropriate action when encountering these creatures.
Understanding the Issue
Returning a beached hatchling to the water is not the solution. Hatchlings typically hatch in the warmer currents of Mozambique, so the colder temperatures of False Bay could be harmful to them. The best course of action is to transport them to the Two Oceans Aquarium.
Handling a Turtle Hatchling
When handling a turtle hatchling, keep it sheltered from direct sunlight and wind during transportation. Take note of details such as size, location, injuries, and contacts if you hand the turtle over to someone else to transport.
Stranded Larger Turtles
In some cases, larger turtles may become stranded on the beach. Check for a response to touch and exercise caution, as these frightened wild animals could bite. Transport the turtle only by its shell and place it in a secure location to prevent it from falling.
If you encounter hatchlings on the beach, immediately contact Tracy Whitehead, the Rescue Coordinator of the Two Oceans Aquarium Foundation, at +27 833001663.
Education and Awareness
Sharing knowledge with others and encouraging responsible behavior is crucial for conservation. By following these guidelines, beachgoers can contribute to the protection of Cape’s diverse marine ecosystem and save the lives of these vulnerable marine animals.
Preserving the lives of these magnificent creatures requires responsible behavior from all beachgoers. Keep these guidelines in mind and help save the stranded turtles during your next visit to the beautiful beaches of the Cape region.