Algarve beaches have seen an abnormally high number of dead sea turtles washed ashore, particularly in the east area of the region. Zoomarine’s animal rehabilitation centre is asking people to contact its biologists should further cases be witnessed.
Zoomarine biologist Élio Vicente said: “The cause of death may be varied: diseases, parasites or old age.”
Seven of the turtles found belong to the caretta caretta species, accustomed to the Portuguese waters, and two others are leatherback turtles, the largest in the world.
“Leatherback turtles can easily reach 200 kilograms,” said Élio Vicente, explaining that some of the specimens were retrieved for analysis.
He added: “It is extremely important that all incidents are reported to the Maritime Police so that information can be collected to help prepare should a similar situation happen in the future.”
If you see any dead turtles or turtles in need of assistance on Algarve beaches, please call the Maritime Police on 289 894 993 or 282 762 826.