We've never had a beach clean up where we haven't found any abandoned fishing gear of some kind; lures, sinkers, floats, hooks, lobster cages or fishing line.
Sweet Seraphina, the endangered Green Sea Turtle, was rescued by Australian Seabird Rescue Central Coast after she was found floating at a local jetty. She was brought to see the Wildlife Team at SASH Central Coast, where it was discovered that her intestine was full of fishing line, which was causing a blockage within her bowel. Seraphina was in a critical condition; however, she required an emergency exploratory laparotomy (ex-lap) surgery to save her life.
Following a thorough examination and extensive diagnostics, Seraphina was smoothly anaesthetised and prepped for the procedure. The first half of Seraphina’s surgery went without fault. Dr Ingrid was able to gently remove the sea turtle’s intestines from her carapace (shell) and, with the smallest of incisions, remove the entangled clumps of fishing line, all the while the sleeping sea princess not feeling a thing, but as the surgery team travelled further along checking the intestines they found, not one, but three bowel perforations that were damaged beyond repair. Their hearts sank as they concluded that the most humane thing to do was put the beautiful and very innocent creature in front of them to sleep. So, they did. And Seraphina never woke up.
Sea Turtles are an endangered species, with fishing line being one of their deadliest threats, and at SASH, they are not calling for people to stop fishing, but WE are all calling for people to fish responsibility: Use biodegradable fishing line; count your fishing hooks; and always clean up after yourself.
Taken by SASH team
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