Plastic and sewage claim four more endangered turtles

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Navy vets remove a young hawksbill sea turtle found on the beach at Soi Na Jomtien 14 where someone had placed pineapples around the carcass.

Plastic and sewage claimed four more endangered sea turtles that confused trash for food.

Veterinarians from Sattahip’s Sea Turtle Conservation Center were called to Soi Na Jomtien 14 on August 24 where pineapples had been placed around the carcass of a young hawksbill sea turtle.

Vet Kirin Sorapitatcharoen confirmed the death and predicted the animal had died 7 days earlier. Kirin measured the 31cm long and 27cm wide turtle and estimated it was about 2 years old.

An autopsy determined that the turtle died from eating garbage, including scraps of plastic bags, plastic rope, HDPE rope, and rigid plastic, which turtles confuse for jellyfish.

An autopsy of the turtle revealed it had recently ingested plastic garbage.

Also on August 24, Surasak Hongthong, captain of a tourist fishing boat found the carcass of a large sea turtle floating near Koh Geung, Sattahip Bay. He took it to Khao Major pier, Samaesarn, Sattahip.

Vet Kirin Sorapitatcharoen was called in and confirmed it was a rare hawksbill turtle one meter long, weighing 40 kilos. He predicted it had been dead about a week.

Radm. Wara Tankham, head of the Sea Turtle Hospital at the Royal Thai Navy Sea Turtles Conservation Center in Sattahip, said this was the 4th turtle found this week.

He lamented the state of Thailand’s sea and feared if it isn’t cleaned up, sea turtles might soon become extinct.