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Injured turtles released back into the sea

turtle in the sea
File photo: Turtle being released (Christos Theodorides)

Two green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) injured by boat propellers over the summer have been released back to their natural habitat after they received necessary treatment, the department of fisheries and marine research of the agriculture ministry announced on Wednesday.

In its post on social media, the department said that young ‘Aphrodite’ and adult green sea turtle ‘Anastasia’ have been “returned healthy to the sea where they belong”.

‘Aphrodite’, a medium size turtle weighting 14.4kgs and measuring about 49cm long and 45.5 wide, was found by diving schools in Protaras after she had been hit by a boat propeller. The turtle was transferred on August 25, 2022 to the Cyprus Marine Aquaculture Research Centre (CyMARC) in Meneou, Larnaca which also operates a sea turtle first aid treatment and rehabilitation centre.

There, ‘Aphrodite’ underwent surgery by a veterinarian for her wounds and received extensive treatment for over two months.

‘Anastasia’, a large 92cm long and 85cm wide turtle weighing about 100kgs was also hit by a boat propeller and was found by park rangers on a Polis Chrysochous beach. The turtle was transferred on August 28, 2022 to the CyMARC where it received extensive treatment for more than two months.

Prior to their release on November 11 to a beach in Meneou, the two turtles were tested for their ability to swim, dive and feed on their own.

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