LUCKY BABY LOGGERHEAD TURTLE SAVED AFTER DRIFTING THOUSANDS OF KILOMETRES

April 28, 2010 by dyertrust

Marine biologistshave rescued a baby loggerhead turtle which was driven thousands of kilometers from its home in the warm waters of Mozambique around the tip of Africa and into the cold waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

Weighing only a couple of grams and measuring less than 6 centimeters, it was dehydrated and weak when found in Kleinbaai, about 100 kilometers from Cape Town, after recent storms.

The turtle is now successfully recovering at the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town prior to its release in the Indian Ocean. According toour marine biologist, Michelle Wcisel, less than 1 in 1000 hatchlings survive to adulthood. She said: If this lucky youngster reaches maturity it will reach anywhere between 70 - 150 kgs and measure more than a meter in length.

Loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta), which are an endangered species, have a lifespan of about 50 years. They are rarely seen in the cold waters beyond Cape Aghulas the most southerly point of Africa - and are particularly susceptible to being driven along by storms and strong sea currents.

Marine Biologist Oliver with loggerhead turtleTo see a video report go towww.dict.org.za/video.php

The Trust wishes to thank local residents Eldo Marais and Deon Smit for bringing the turtle to the rescue centre.