Stranded Sea Turtle?| January 30, 2009
I've found a stranded sea turtle. What should I do?
If you see a live, entangled or injured, sea turtle, please note the exact location. Call the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Program at 757-385-7575. After the beep, give a detailed description of the turtle's location, condition, your name, and a phone number where you can be reached.
If on the water, note your GPS position and stay with the animal, if possible, to help stranding staff locate it. Do not attempt to rescue the animal yourself. If you are out of cell phone range, radio the US Coast Guard via VHF Channel 16. They can then contact the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Center at 757-385-7575.
If you find a dead, stranded sea turtle, do not touch it. Note the exact location and call the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Program at 757-385-7575 to report your find.
All of the sea turtles found in the Chesapeake Bay are either endangered or threatened species, thereby under the protection of the Endangered Species Act. When viewing sea turtles, you must stay at least 50 yards (150 ft) away.
(Some of this information is adapted from NOAA's Northeast Marine Mammal & Sea Turtle Protection Guidelines for Recreational Boaters & Fishermen.)