Zamboanga: ‘Matty’ released back into the wild

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A juvenile hawksbill sea turtle, named Matty, is released back to the wild after being recovered and rehabilitated by city veterinarians at the Zamboanga State College of Marine Sciences and Technology (ZSCMST) hatchery facility.

Mayor John Dalipe together with City Veterinarian Dr. Mario Arriola led the release of Matty at the Sta. Cruz Island early Thursday morning, demonstrating commitment to environmental and wildlife protection.

Dalipe thanked the veterinarians who took care and nursed the turtle back to health that led to its release. He likewise appealed to fishermen to report any sightings of turtles within the sea waters of the city.

The endangered turtle was rescued by fisherfolks after it was observed floating and barely moving along the shore of Matiti Grande, Limaong, east of the city Saturday, Sept. 2. It was immediately reported to the DENR and brought to the ZSCMST hatchery facility where it was carefully monitored and assessed.

The turtle was named Matty as it was discovered along the shore of Matiti Grande in barangay Limaong.

Radiology examination revealed no evidence of fish hook and line ingestion. However, an impacted fecal matter was observed on the radiograph.

The team of veterinarians and caretakers nursed the rescued turtle back to health over a course of 26 days. The team authorized the turtle’s release in Sta. Cruz where experts hope it will continue to have a long and happy life.

Present during the release at the Sta. Cruz Island were representatives from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-9) and Office of the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (OCENR). (Sheila Covarrubias, photo courtesy by Kathy Wee Sit)

(Source: City Government of Zamboanga Facebook page)

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