- Investigations to ascertain the cause of sudden death of these marine creatures underway
- Under the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance, all sea turtles their shells and eggs are fully protected
By Chaturanga Samarawickrama
Following the MV X-Press Pearl fire, more than ten turtles, a dolphin, several seabirds, and scores of dead fish have begun to wash up on beaches, so far, wildlife sources said.
They said the investigations to ascertain the cause of sudden death of these marine creatures were underway. Their remains were found from Puttalam to Mirissa.
Under the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance, all sea turtles their shells and eggs are fully protected. Therefore, their carcasses were sent to the Government Analyst to conduct further investigations following a court order.
The turtles which were found washed ashore at Uswetakeiyawa, Panadura, Unawatuna, Wellawatte, Moratuwa and Induruwa beaches. Two turtles with injuries were found from Unawatuna beach, they said.
Most of the turtles that were found dead on the beaches off Panadura and Wellawatte had their carapaces broken. One dead turtle at the Unawatuna beach was found with injures.
The cause of death of turtles found with broken carapaces cannot be concluded as to be due to the fire onboard the ship.
Moreover, a dead dolphin was found washed ashore at Kosgoda beach this morning along with another five dead turtles which were found from the Payagala and Panadura coastal areas today. Also several shoals of fish and sea birds were found washed ashore following the MV X-Press Pearl disaster.
The relevant authorities such as the Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA), National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) and the Department of Wildlife Conservation are conducting investigations into this, the official added.