December 13, 2018
New England Latest News | Ranked-Choice Voting | Medical Marijuana | Snowmobile Safety | Albino Porcupine

Sea turtles, some dead, some barely alive, wash ashore in Massachusetts

Steve Heaslip | The Cape Cod Times via AP
Steve Heaslip | The Cape Cod Times via AP
Ben Thyng does an exam of a newly arrived living Kemp's ridley turtle to the ICU at the Audubon Society's Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary in Wellfleet, Massachusetts, as cold stunned turtles are brought in off area beaches after several days of below freezing weather, Nov. 23, 2018. Mass Audubon Director Bob Prescott believes a warming trend in the Gulf of Maine has allowed the turtles to delay migration south.

WELLFLEET, Massachusetts — An unusual number of sea turtles have been washing ashore in New England, many of which are a critically endangered turtle species called Kemp’s ridley.

A Massachusetts wildlife sanctuary director tells the Cape Cod Times that at least 219 turtles washed ashore Wednesday through Friday on Cape Cod beaches. The expert tells CNN that 173 of those turtles have died.

The phenomenon is not uncommon, but the number of stranded turtles this year has already surpassed what is considered normal for the season. Turtles usually continue to be found ashore through Christmas.

Mass Audubon Director Bob Prescott says it’s possible the region could see nearly 1,000 stranded turtles before the new year.

Prescott believes a warming trend in the Gulf of Maine has allowed the turtles to delay migration south.

 


Have feedback? Want to know more? Send us ideas for follow-up stories.

You may also like