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The large turtle that came ashore today at Karon beach on Phuket

Phuket Puzzle as Dugong Joins Marine Death List

Monday, October 5, 2009
UPDATE

A dead dugong was carried from Trang province to the Phuket Marine Biology Centre on Monday night. Biologists were examining the dugong on Tuesday to determine the cause of death. Twelve turtles, most damaged by nets, have been brought to the centre already so far this month.

Original Report

FISHING NETS and plastic rubbish are posing a real threat to the marine creatures of the Andaman coast, Phuket marine biologist Dr Kongkiat Kittiwattanawong said today.

''The problem is getting much worse,'' added Dr Kongkiat, of Phuket's Marine Biology Centre. ''I am really worried about some species being lost completely.''

His comments came after a young Bruda whale became entangled in netting and died over the weekend.

The whale measured 4.5 metres, had a circumference of 172 centimetres and weighed 600 kilos, an autopsy on Phuket determined.

Dr Kongkiat said the creature was two or three months old. Fishermen off Nok island in Trang found the young creature and brought it to the centre.

The Bruda whale had died because the netting meant it could not breathe or even open its mouth. Cuts from the netting went deep but there were no other wounds on the animal's body, Dr Kongkiat said.

Bruda whales were native to the Andaman and Gulf of Thailand waters. The area was a breeding ground but the animals usually grew quickly and swam out to sea.

There were three species of Bruda whales and this female specimen was distinguished by having three dorsal fins, he said.

Today and yesterday, distressed turtles were found at Karon beach on Phuket. The one that came ashore there today was a large male green turtle, about 50 years old.

It required six men to carry it to a pickup for transportation to the biology centre. The green turtle measured 94 centimetres in length and was 83 centimetres wide.

It had injured flippers, although it limbs appeared intact, and would probably be released after recovering with treatment at the centre.

Dr Kongkiat said that the two main causes of distress and death among the region's dugongs, dolphins, whales and turtles were fishing nets and plastic rubbish.

Sometimes four or five kilos of undigested plastic will be found in the stomach of a dead creature. Often, the monsoons battered creatures who had been injured by netting to the point where they were washed to shore.

Netting sometimes appeared as edible prey to creatures.

Vast amounts of nets, which do not deteriorate over time, trapped creatures and were posing a continuing threat, Dr Kongkiat said.
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Comments

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All fishing boats in Thailand do not have bins for garbages and throw overboard all plastics and useless fishing nets during fishing trips by the sea.
When Fishery Department will educate them with the help of the Marine Biologists about marine life protection?

Posted by Whistle-Blower on October 5, 2009 19:28


Sunday July 5, 2020
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa

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