Two turtle carcasses found on two beaches in Terengganu | Malaysia
KUALA TERENGGANU, January 14 — Two green sea turtles (penyu agar) were found dead on the beaches today; one at Pantai Batu Burok and the other at Pantai Seberang Takir in Kuala Nerus.
Terengganu fisheries department director Ruzaidi Mamat said the two green turtles, both around 20 years old, were about 1.3 meters long and 0.65 meters wide.
“The physical characteristics of the two carcasses found today are more or less the same and weigh around 40-50 kg and both are believed to be male turtles,” he said when met by Bernama at the location of one of the turtle carcasses at Pantai Batu. Burok here today.
He said the two carcasses were each buried in the area close to where they were found.
Ruzaidi added that the discovery of the two carcasses brought the death toll of Green Sea species to five this month, with further carcasses found at Pantai Penunjuk near Kijal in Kemaman on January 3 and at Chendering Port. January 12.
Yesterday, the department received the case of a baby green turtle found dead, presumably due to the ingestion of plastic, on the beach of Pulau Kerengga (near Pulau Redang).
He said the two turtles found today are believed to have died of drowning after being stuck in trawl nets.
Therefore, Ruzaidi called on all trawl operators to install Turtle Elimination Devices (Turtle Excluder Devices or TEDs) on their trawls, as prescribed by the Malaysian Department of Fisheries as a mandatory condition for them to be able to operate trawls.
In addition, the public is also advised not to litter garbage and plastic waste in coastal areas, as turtles easily ingest plastic waste, which poses a threat to the species.
Ruzaidi added that last year a total of 51 turtle deaths were recorded by his staff, and the majority were green turtles.
“Also, we don’t rule out the possibility of criminal elements, where last year a turtle carcass was found with its shell brutally cut open,” he said.
Ruzaidi also called on the public to immediately call the 24-hour Fishcom hotline on 03-8888 5019 or 03-8870 4058 if they find a live or dead turtle washed up on a beach. — Bernama