06 Jun 2019 12:14:37
SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast shell-ebrates World Oceans Day
SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast has kicked off World Oceans Day celebrations early, with the successful release of their latest patient, Ruby the Green Sea Turtle on Mooloolaba Beach. The attraction is also marking the international day by taking part in its biggest clean-up mission yet – a 24-hour beach clean hosted by global marine conservation charity, the SEA LIFE Trust.
After four months of successful rehabilitation at SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast’s Turtle Rehabilitation Centre, Ruby the Green Sea Turtle was released back into the ocean after regaining much-needed weight and passing her health checks with flying colours!
Ruby the Green Sea Turtle arrived at the attraction’s Turtle Rescue Centre at the end of February this year after she was found floating at Pumicestone Passage. With her body and mouth covered in barnacles, Ruby displayed obvious signs of distress and was evidently lethargic.
“Ruby’s rescue reinforces the devastating impact that plastic pollution is having on marine life, who mistake plastic for food. Fortunately for Ruby, she didn’t fall victim this time but SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast is encouraging the community to do all they can to help the coast’s four-flipper friends,” says Brittany Attwood, Aquarist at SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast. “That’s why we’re excited to participate in the SEA LIFE Trust’s 24-hour beach clean-up this Saturday 8 June for World Oceans Day.
“The event will be kicking off in New Zealand and ending in California, and will be hosted across 50 different SEA LIFE attractions including SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast where we will be hosting a clean-up on Mooloolaba Beach from 8am.”
It is estimated that 8 million tonnes of plastic waste enter the world’s oceans each year and that by 2050, the oceans could have more plastic than fish. Most of the littered plastic waste worldwide ultimately ends up at sea. The litter washing up on our local shores is not just unpleasant to look at; it also harms and kills our precious wildlife. Hundreds of species of marine wildlife including seals, seabirds, turtles and whales have mistaken marine litter for food resulting in starvation, poisoning and fatal stomach blockages.
“The SEA LIFE Trust 24 Hour Global Beach Clean is a simple and effective way for locals to make a difference. SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast has hosted beach and river clean-ups in the past, but this year we want to unite with our sister attractions around the globe on World Oceans Day and focus our attention on what we see as a global crisis,” said Quinn Clarke, General Manager at SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast.
Quinn concludes: "Everyone should do their part when it comes to reducing plastic waste ending up in our oceans in order to help marine conservation. At SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast we have an ongoing commitment to educating both locals and visitors about how they can help protect the lives of marine creatures for generations to come.”
SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast is appealing for volunteers to lend a hand on Saturday 8 June from 8am. You can find more information on their website (www.sealifesunshinecoast.com.au) about how you and your family can become part of the activities. Participants are encouraged to meet outside the café at SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast at 7.45am.
This year, SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast is celebrating its 30th anniversary, during which time the attraction has rehabilitated and released more over 1,000 turtles just like Ruby.