Great Sound Reptile Round-Up

Published on May 7th, 2017

While the Great Sound of Bermuda may provide the kind of flat water that is ideal for foiling America’s Cup Class boats, the sea turtles lurking under the water is a different story. With the boats traveling upwards of 50 mph, a collision would be devastating.

So Bermuda is having a reptile round-up, netting the critters and moving them to a purpose-built ocean enclosure to keep them out of harm’s way during the America’s Cup.

They will be homed in the Bermuda Aquarium Museum and Zoo in an operation involving America’s Cup Bermuda, the Ministry of the Environment and relevant environmental organisations.

“We began and continue with the objective of capturing the turtles safely, looking after them during the enhanced traffic volume period and then returning them to their habitats,” reports Mike Winfield, CEO of the ACBDA.

“Working with local sea turtle experts, the team collectively developed a plan to capture and relocate these animals in late May and June which is expected to reduce the risk to animals while keeping them in a safe and humane manner,” notes Ian Walker, principal curator of the Bermuda Aquarium, Museum and Zoo.

Numbers of turtles in Bermuda’s near shore waters have increased significantly over the past couple of years. The boating public is encouraged to assist in the conservation of sea turtles by travelling at slower speeds and strictly observing no wake zones, being on the watch for turtles and encouraging other boaters to also be on the lookout for turtles.

Source: The Royal Gazette

Background: The 35th American’s Cup has attracted six teams (5 challengers and 1 defender) that will compete in the new 15-meter AC Class, with a series of qualifiers beginning on May 26, 2017 that lead to the start of the America’s Cup Match on June 17, 2017. Complete schedule.

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