Coast Guard Assisting NOAA in Releasing 103 Sea Turtles

MIAMI – Coast Guard Station Fort Pierce, Fla., is scheduled to assist the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration by transporting 103 Loggerhead sea turtles back to sea about 16 miles east of Fort Pierce, Monday.

NOAA scientists chose to release the turtles farther out to sea in the Gulf Stream so they have a better chance of survival. Larger, older turtles will be released by NOAA from shore near Sebastian Inlet, Fla.

NOAA fisheries scientists studied the turtles during routine annual research June 16-27, on the effectiveness of turtle excluder devices (TEDs). A TED is a special component installed in a shrimp trawl that enables sea turtles to escape from shrimpers’ nets while minimizing the loss of shrimp. TEDs were made a mandatory item on offshore shrimping boats in 1989.

“Coast Guard Station Fort Pierce has an exceptional working relationship with NOAA and we’re happy to be able to assist them in any way possible, especially when it comes to protecting an endangered species,” said Chief Warrant Officer Todd Kagarise, the commanding officer of Station Fort Pierce.

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