Another Leatherback turtle rescued -mariners encouraged to report entangled animals 

The Marine Animal Entanglement Response (MAER) team at the Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) disentangled a leatherback turtle yesterday, just outside the east entrance to the Cape Cod Canal. Recreational boaters discovered the nearly 500 pound turtle as it was struggling with a difficult entanglement. They stood by the turtle at a safe distance until the MAER team arrived. 

Jennifer Tackaberry, member of the Center for Coastal Studies MAER, team works to free entangled leatherback turtle. CCS image taken under NOAA permit # 50 CFR 222.310

Jennifer Tackaberry, member of the Center for Coastal Studies MAER, team works to free entangled leatherback turtle. CCS image taken under NOAA permit # 50 CFR 222.310

The turtle, an adult female, had multiple wraps around her neck and front flippers. The wounds at her neck and flippers indicate that she had likely been entangled for some time.

Swift reporting on the part of the boaters and a rapid response on the part of the MAER team has given the turtle a much better prognosis for survival.

The turtle, like many other leatherbacks, was probably in the bay to feed on massive shoals of jellyfish. More turtles are likely to arrive in the coming weeks as turtles further to the north begin their southward migration as temperatures cool. 

Mariners are urged to keep watch for entangled marine animals and to immediately report sightings to the Marine Animal Entanglement Response Hotline (1-800-900-3622) or the US Coast Guard, then stand by the animal at a safe distance until trained responders arrive.

CCCS disentanglement operations are conducted in partnership with Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration under federal permits issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service. Support for the Marine Animal Response Team also comes from the Massachusetts Environmental Trust and contributions from CCS Members.

The Center for Coastal Studies (CCS) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving coastal and marine ecosystems and promoting the responsible stewardship of our oceans. For more information contact www.coastalstudies.org or www.facebook.com/coastalstudies

Contact Us

Entanglement Hotline: (800) 900-3622
ccs@coastalstudies.org
(508) 487-3622
5 Holway Avenue
Provincetown, MA 02657
(508) 487-3623

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