The victim was a sea turtle everyone was trying to see and admire
Lack of respect to the regulations and, most possibly, greed, are prevailing in Laganas Bay, Zakynthos, during this holiday season, which will expire in a few days. Up to 12-13 medium, big and small boats are still gathering around swimming sea turtles every day, making as much noise as possible. Sometimes the smaller boats are chasing the turtles and maneuvering over them, regardless of the regulations in place for this Nature Protection Area.
We are sad to report that once more the touristic attraction of “turtle spotting” was fatal for a male loggerhead turtle resident in the area, which had been tagged and photographed by ARCHELON and was also known by the name “Hercules”. The turtle was reported as heavily injured to the ARCHELON team and the National Marine Park of Zakynthos employees on the 26th of July.
“Hercules” was found and was immediately transported to ARCHELON’s Rescue Center in Glyfada, near Athens. The trauma was extensive; the bones of the pelvis were exposed, and the spine had been struck longitudinally by the vessel. Despite the efforts of the staff and volunteers at the Rescue Center, “Hercules” eventually succumbed to his injuries on the 7th of September.
Here is the question: how would the visitors of Laganas Bay that booked these turtle spotting trips feel by knowing that they participated in this fatal “hunt”? This and other previous similar cases could have been avoided in Laganas Bay, if ONLY the regulations for the marine area and the correct observation of sea turtles were followed by tour operators and tourists alike.
Read the press release for the state of affairs in Laganas bay, Zakynthos, here: http://bit.ly/2GYoSEM