Record Turtle Strandings at Sandy Neck

COURTESY OF TOWN OF BARNSTABLE A turtle triage set up in the garage at Sandy Neck Beach Park.

COURTESY OF TOWN OF BARNSTABLE
A turtle triage set up in the garage at Sandy Neck Beach Park.

BARNSTABLE – Barnstable Town Manager Thomas Lynch said the town has never seen the large number of turtles strandings taken place this season on Sandy Neck.

Record numbers of turtles are being rescued along the shores of the seven-mile long peninsula that juts into Cape Cod Bay.

Since Saturday, more than 70 turtles have been found cold-stunned on the beach, he said. The average number of strandings for a typical season is 50.

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Sandy Neck Beach Park Manager Nina Coleman said this is a sign that the Kemp’sRidley turtle population is on the rise.

A temporary triage for the cold-stunned turtles is in place at Sandy Neck, where staff works to assess the turtles and help transfer them to the Wellfleet Audubon Society and New England Aquarium for further treatment.

The public is advised on taking special care when encountering a cold-stunned turtle.

Coleman advised, “Do not attempt to pick it up or place it back in the water. Place seaweed over the animal to keep it warm, and mark its location with a stake or piece of driftwood, and contact Natural Resources or Mass Audubon. “