At 11.15 a.m. on Saturday, Alisha and Parina were lowered down from a fishing boat into the sea and they swam away, diving below the surface quickly.
The two green turtles that were rescued from beaches in the city were taken back to the water after they had received treatment for their injuries at the Tree Foundation’s rescue and rehabilitation centre in Neelankarai.
Alisha had been found stranded early in February due to a blockage in her digestive system, which was the result of ingesting a plastic water packet.
Parina had been found on the Neelankarai Beach, severely dehydrated and entangled in a fishing net that had been disposed of in the sea.
Supraja Dharini, chairperson of Tree Foundation, said the turtles had been given intensive treatment and nutritional support to ensure they were fully rehabilitated and could be released back into the sea. “We chose to let them into the sea now as there is a fishing ban which means they have greater chances of swimming away safely without getting trapped in fishing nets,” she said.
Julius Edward, Assistant Director of Fisheries, said, “Plastics as well as old nets disposed of by fishermen should be kept away from the sea as many sea animals like this can suffer due to them.”