BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Despite the fact that turtles are mostly strong and enduring creature, they still need a lot of attention and this weekend Cape Cod turtles were rescued again.
Turtles are mostly marine or water creatures although many of them can just as well live on land and they are famous for their endurance and longevity. Given these characteristics plus their tough shell, you’d think they could take easily take care of themselves. But it seems like turtles are, after all, quite fragile and need to be protected and rescued from time to time.
Along with the arrival of the holiday season which also means winter is coming, there are many sea turtles who are very sensitive to low temperatures and get some sort of ‘cold-shock’ from which they have to be rescued.
This is exactly what happened on this weekend at Cape Cod. Every year in this period, volunteers and marine biologists gather on the coast of Massachusetts for a turtle rescue operation. The turtles get washed ashore and freeze. This weekend, 60 percent of the turtles found were still alive. Although the time from when they are washed ashore and until the rescuers try and save them is very short, many of the turtles don’t make it.
The first ‘wave’ of turtles came in November and since then, more than 200 have been saved. Last year, the rescuers managed to save and rehabilitate 1,200 turtles. They are Kemp’s ridley turtles, an endangered species.
You may be wondering how exactly these creatures end up on the beaches at Cape Cod. Normally, the turtles spend the summer in the waters which represent a very proper environment for them. However, when the cold season approaches they move further south were the water is warmer. Unfortunately, not all of them make it to destination and many get lost on the way. Most of the disoriented turtles end up stranded on beaches.
The higher temperatures of this season may have added to the turtles’ disorientation as there were many still in the usually not so hot waters. Fortunately, with the water being warmer, most of the turtles were found alive and will receive further medical care at the New England’s Aquarium and after that they will be transported to Florida were they will spend the winter.
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