Increased Number Of Endangered Turtles Washed Up On Central Coast

Four in the past two weeks


Article heading image for Increased Number Of Endangered Turtles Washed Up On Central Coast

A number of large sea turtles are popping up on Central Coast shores over the past fortnight, a total of four sightings has raised concerns for wildlife patrol.

The most recent sighting of the world's largest endangered leatherback turtle was found on Sunday at North Shelly Beach.

Through March 27 to April 1, the species were found swept up on the sand at Toowoon Bay, Avoca and Birdie beach.

Cathy Gilmore from Australian Turtle Rescue Central Coast said volunteers made the grim discovery.

"We are all really devastated but yet we are all really fascinated," Gilmore said.

"They are the biggest species of turtle. These guys can dive deeper than some whales can, that's pretty amazing."

"They very rarely are near … Australian shores."

Experts say the climate is affecting the rare turtles, saddened at the idea there may be more scenarios in the coming weeks.

A NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service spokesperson said autopsies are being undertaken to figure out exactly how the sea reptiles are dieing.  

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"While it is unusual, it is possible that the recent storms have played a part in their washing ashore," the spokesperson said.

"During storms and high swells there is an increase in carcasses washing ashore on local beaches."

The rescue service also cited pollution, such as plastic and waste, as reasons for the rare sightings.

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13 April 2022




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