[Coral-List] juvenile sea turtles
geoffreymcook at yahoo.com
Tue Aug 17 12:57:17 EDT 2004
Dear Fellow Listers,
Although the letter that follows is not directly related to corals, I am hoping that the server will allow its passing and that someone can furnish my friends and colleagues with helpful information. Many thanks in advance for your time and assistance.
Geoffrey M. Cook
George Mason University
Department of Environmental Science and Policy
4400 University Dr.
"G'day Geoff, and huge apologies for bad correspondence. We are in the
Gulf of Thailand at the moment, Koh Samui, and, after the Malaysian Islands
south of here, it's a bit of a disappointment waterwise. Cloudy water.
Whereas south the water was crystal clear and fish life pretty plentiful for this
area. Main reason for writing is I need HELP!! There is a big effort
being made (against big odds) to save the turtles (Green, Ridley and
Leatherback) in the Malaysian Islands, and while in Perhentian Besar we caught up with
a team helping the Green Turtles, but the big problem they had was ants
attacking the nests. When they find one with ants, they move the eggs
that are still OK, and we were helping with one. There was one egg that
had been broken into and had ants in it, but the little turtle was still
alive, so they gave it to me to see if I could save it!!! Sucker..I kinda
treated it like I would one of my quaileggs in New Zealand, and it worked.
So I now have a very small turtle in a bowl in the cockpit!! Where his
umbilical cord goes into his stomach is not quite closed, but pretty close.
Most days he is perky but he likes to lie on some seaweed I got him and
he wont eat. I have tried small pieces of shrimp, squid, fillet steak
and now some fish food from a pet shop that the local aquarium
suggested. He has a rather feeble go now and then, but
does not pursue it with much enthusiasm. The baby hawksbills we had years
ago ate fillet steak, liver, prawns fish...anything. I have been told that baby turtles were carniverous until they grew up. So what I want to know is: Do they only start eating when their stomach completely closes over (its a bit like the
fontenella on a human baby!!!)? How long can they go without food, and will he just start when he gets hunggry ? Am I tempting him with the right stuff? and if not what should it be? Being a premature baby, he probably hasn't gone through the normal
transitions, but we did let him walk down a beach a bit before putting him the water
bowl! But he has to go back to his beach in Malaysia and we will be back
there in a month. Can't put him in the water here, he wouldn't last five
minutes with the amount of nets and fishermen, and they would catch him an
shove him on a hook. The turtle people didn't think I had a hope of saving
him, and I can't get in touch with them. I have written to a few turtle
sanctuaries that I got from Google, but so far no answers..."
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