Turtle That Pooed Plastic Is Released Back Into Sea

This is the moment the endangered green sea turtle that made international headlines when it was filmed defecating 14 grams of plastic after being rescued from a fishing net is released back into the sea.

The green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) was rescued two months ago by Roberto Ubieta, a fisherman from the coastal town of San Clemente in the eastern Argentine province of Buenos Aires, who noticed the animal in his fishing nets and pulled it free.

As it seemed unwell he took it to the Mundo Marino foundation for treatment. The turtle then repeatedly defecated a starling amount of plastic waste after being admitted to the centre, including pieces of plastic, nylon, bags and wire.

Video Credit: CEN/Mundo Marino

Archive Story – Turtle Poos Plastic After Being Rescued From Fish Net

Ignacio Pena, the veterinary doctor at the Mundo Marino Foundation, said in a press statement that “in the last tests we did not find any evidence of more strange items in its organism. So we believed it had expelled all the rubbish from its intestine.

“Moreover, the good behaviour of the animal and the fact that it was stable during its feeding allowed us to release it back to its natural habitat”.

The turtle was released back into the sea on San Clemente beach on 24th February.

Credit: CEN/Mundo Marino
The moment the turtle is released back into the ocean

In the video, the turtle can be seen being carried down the beach where a crowd has gathered to watch the release.

The animal is then carried into the water where it is dropped into the water as the crowd cheers.

The turtle then swims away back into its natural habitat.

Andrea Cabrera, the vice president of the Mundo Marino Foundation, told local media that “83.2 percent of the waste registered in 20 towns of the coast of Buenos Aires is made up of plastic”, according to the fourth edition of the census of Coastal Marine Rubbish.

Video Credit: CEN/Mundo Marino (archive)

Sergio Rodriguez Heredia, a biologist from the foundation, said that “turtles simply eat plastic. Adults eat algae, but young ones also eat fish or crustaceous and other animals that could be mixed up with plastic.

“A piece of nylon is similar to a piece of algae or a jellyfish. They eat whatever they come across while swimming in the water. And everything comes from us, from the tourists on the beach and the cities.”

The green sea turtle is listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Credit: CEN/Mundo Marino
Moment the turtle is released to the sea

To find out more about the author, editor or agency that supplied this story – please click below.
Story By: Ana LacasaSub-EditorJoseph Golder, Agency: Central European News

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