Officials have no idea why more than 400 hundred dead sea turtles have been found floating in the waters off El Salvador’s Pacific coast. Late last week, the environmental ministry posted on Twitter that its officers,
“found between 300 and 400 dead sea turtles floating around seven nautical miles offshore from Jiquilisco Bay.”
Most of the turtles were in various stages of decomposing when discovered, and the ministry did not include their species at the time, nor had there been any reasons given why the turtles died. Necropsies were planned to be carried out in order to determine the cause of the deaths.
A similar incident occurred in 2013 in El Salvadore when hundreds of sea turtles were found dead off the coast. At the time, scientists stated their deaths were the result of toxic algae ingested by the turtles. According to IFL Science, the so-called red tides which are reddish brown in color and are comprised of a few species of dinoflagellates, kill manatees, fish, birds and other organisms.
There still remains some speculation that humans could also be partially to blame:
“Some say it could be due to climate change, sea currents or the techniques used by fishermen,” biologist Ivan Rammirez of the Foundation of the Sustainable Development of Nicaragua stated.
Sea turtles have had to survive Hurricane Irma this year which wiped out green and loggerhead turtle nests along the beaches of Florida. In addition to trying to survive hurricanes and algae, sadly the seven species of sea turtles have also had to risk getting entangled in fishing nets and drowning, eating plastics thrown into the sea and climate change. Whatever the reasons, all sea turtles are listed as vulnerable species or are on the endangered list. Hopefully the cause of their deaths will be determined and steps can be taken to avoid this tragic loss of this beautiful sea life.
(Photos of more than 400 dead sea turtles found floating off coast pixabay)
Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook.
Did you know that if you want to get updates from a Facebook page, you need to do more than “like” it? To get recent postings in your Facebook feed, you must also hover your mouse over the word “following” and then click “see first” from the drop-down menu. You may want to check back with your favorite pages on occasion because Facebook often changes your settings, no longer having your favorites among those to “see first.”