CCS frees entangled leatherback turtle in Cape Cod Bay

Responders worked from a small boat to disentangle the leatherback. CCS image, NOAA permit #50 CFR 222.310

August 25, 2017: The Center for Coastal Studies Marine Animal Entanglement Response team disentangled another leatherback sea turtle yesterday in Cape Cod Bay.

The nearly six foot long female was one of five leatherbacks known to be entangled in the last two days alone. It seems likely that a large number of these endangered turtles have moved into Cape Cod Bay recently as they begin their annual southward migration.

“We are seeing a large influx of leatherbacks in our waters here off Cape Cod and are requesting local community help by reporting any turtle entangled or in trouble.” said Bob Lynch of the MAER team. “Through the public’s assistance we can gain unique insight into these creatures as well as assisting an endangered species.”

Mariners are urged report any entangled or stranded animals immediately to the MAER Hotline (800-900-3622) or to the US Coast Guard.

The Center would like to thank the commercial fisherman, Good Samaritan mariners and the Barnstable Harbormaster for reporting and standing by the turtle.

CCS turtle disentanglement operations are conducted in partnership with Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (MA DMF) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) under federal permits issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).