A female Olive Ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys Olivacea) – an endangered species, moves back to the sea at a beach of Chàm Islands, off the coast of Hội An. The turtle was trapped in a fishing net in Quảng Nam Province before being rescued. Photos courtesy Huỳnh Thùy Hương
CHÀM ISLANDS — The Chàm Island’s Marine Protected Area (MPA) management board has released a female Olive Ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys Olivacea) – an endangered species – after five months of care at the Đà Nẵng-based SaSa Marine animal rescue team.
The MPA’s communication section member, Huỳnh Thùy Hương, confirmed to Việt Nam News that the turtle moved back to the sea at Bấc beach of the Chàm Islands on July 14.
She said the turtle was trapped in a fishing net on the beach of Tam Thanh Commune in Quảng Nam Province in February. It was exhausted with different injuries to its shell, breastplate and front limbs, while too much waste oil and plastic waste was stuck inside the animal.
The turtle, which weighed 13.5kg, had increased to 17kg after five months before heading back to the ocean.
A female Olive Ridley sea turtle is in a box before being released to the ocean. The turtle was released at the Bấc beach of Chàm Islands.
Lê Chiến, head of the SaSa team, said the treatment and care process for the endangered turtle was supported by a sea turtle hospital in Florida, the US.
According to the Chàm Islands MPA, 30 sea turtles have become trapped in fishing nets off the islands since 2018. Two-thirds of the turtles died after becoming entangled.
The city of Hội An has been building sea turtle conservation centres on beaches of the Chàm Islands, and expanding the core zone for special protection to 30 per cent of total 33,000ha.
Chàm Islands-Hội An was recognised as a world biosphere reserve site from 2009.
Only seven species of sea turtle exist in the world, and five of those are found living in Việt Nam. — VNS