A female Olive Ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys Olivacea) was rescued on the beach of Quảng Nam. It was cared for by the SaSa Marine animals rescue team in Đà Nẵng. —Photos courtesy of Lê Chiến
ĐÀ NẴNG — A female Olive Ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys Olivacea) has been rescued and cared for by the SaSa Marine animal rescue team in the central city since it was found on the beach of Tam Thanh commune in Quảng Nam Province on February 23.
Lê Chiến, a member of the team told Việt Nam News the turtle, an endangered species, which weighed 13kg, was exhausted on the beach with different injuries to its shell, breastplate and front limbs .
He said its mouth was filled with waste oil, while X-rays showed a mass of plastic waste inside the animal.
The turtle could swim and local fishermen tried to release it to the ocean as soon as it was found on the beach last month, according to the team.
“We moved it to Đà Nẵng for treatment and care. Its mouth was then cleaned, while the waste in its digestive tract was removed. Medicine was used to cure it from enteritis and other injuries,” Chiến said.
“It could swim in a tub and eat squid and shrimp, and its weight increased one kilo after a month of care and treatment,” he said.
He added the treatment and care process was supported by a sea turtle hospital in Florida, the US.
Chiến has called for support from sea turtle experts and volunteers from Việt Nam and international organisations in saving the endangered turtle as it needed at least two months more care before being released into the ocean.
A sea turtle is cared for at a centre belonging to the SaSa rescue team. It has recovered after one month of care.
The SaSa team has rescued 10 green sea turtles and eight dolphins since the team was established to save the lives of maritime species (turtles, dolphins, sharks and whales) in central Việt Nam.
Last year, a sea turtle was rescued by the team, but it died due to the large amount of plastic in its stomach.
Only seven species of sea turtle exist in the world, and five of those are found living in Việt Nam. — VNS