Meet Bernie A Juvenile Olive Ridley Ghost Gear Victim
Bernie, a juvenlile olive ridley turtle, was came to us form One & Only Reethi Rah in North Male Atoll.
Intake Date: 10th December 2019
Length: 43 cm
Weight: 7.05 kg
Status: Deceased 14th December 2019
Bernie is a juvenile olive ridley sea turtle who was came to us from One and Only Resort, North Male Atoll. He was found entangled in a ghost net which had cut into both his front flippers, causing deep injuries with exposed bone. Bernie had also swallowed some ghost net.
Bernie was weak and dehydrated when he arrived, so at first we gave him fluid therapy and fresh water baths. After he was stabilised we attempted surgery to remove the ghost net he has swallowed. Unfortunately, after 2.5 hours of surgery and several attempts to get the net out, Vet Jackie had to abort the surgery.
We are hoping that Bernie will wake up from his anesthesia. Vet Jackie it currently breathing for him and we are doing everything we can to save him. If he recovers and stabilises, we will attempt to remove the ghost net again in the future.
14 December 2019
Sadly Bernie never woke up from his anesthesia. Bernie actually died from heart failure due to too much fluid in the sack around his heart. This greatly reduces the heart’s ability to function. He also had kidney pathology and kidney failure may have been the underlying cause for the heart failure.
When sea turtles are entangled for an extended time and are unable to eat, malnutrition and dehydration push the sea turtles’ into organ failure. We have no way of knowing how long Bernie was entangled before he was found, but judging by his condition, it was probably for a long time. Neither can we say for sure what caused the kidney disease – it may have been preexisting, but the entanglement most likely caused the rest of his issues.