The Turtle Rehabilitation Centre proudly displayed recycling containers at the entrance. I sorted  several plastic bottles, newspapers and beer cans which once littered the curb.

Storyboards highlighted turtles like the pitiful male who looked like a misshapen hourglass because he was forced to grow around the tight plastic strangling his middle. Polluted waters had caused a flipper on another to become so diseased that amputation was the only solution. Shameful to think that the poor turtle had to be equipped with a prosthetic flipper like some cyborg. Swiftly my eyes jerked away from the mutated turtle who had an upside down, inside out physique because of heavily leaded, mercury laced and oil laden water. Poor thing had swam in “Man Made Scum!” 

Happily, I viewed empty tanks; these turtles were well enough to be released into their natural habitat. I began to hyperventilate; “natural habitat” no longer meant clean, safe and secure. Oceans were no longer hospitable. There was a growing plastic vortex, five times or more the size of Texas. A devastating Deep Water Horizon oil spill in 2010 slimed creatures from sea birds to invertebrates. Global warming dissolved glaciers at alarming rates causing polar Arctic creatures to lose their homes and consequently their lives. February 2021, multiple fishing boats in the bay rescued Greenback turtles suffering from hypothermia. A memorable video showed an oversize heated room with wall to wall turtles recuperating. 

My breathing steadied as I realized that I had a choice. My choice was not to leave so much as a shadow of a carbon footprint. Reuse. Reduce, Recycle. Taking a drink from my steel water container, I reached  into my recycled bag for my fleece jacket made from recycled water bottles. My not-tested-on-animal perfume partially hid under fresh salt air. Naming a hatching after my eldest granddaughter as part of a conservation project, I opted for an email receipt. Congratulating myself on educating the next generations on the life cycle of a turtle, I returned to my energy efficient,  resource friendly home with its solar panels and field of wind turbines. 

     

5 1 vote
Post Rating
18 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Fuji
Fuji(@fuji)
1 year ago

What a sad but hopeful story, Margarida. The plight of the turtles is indeed heartbreaking, but it’s good to know that there is a Rehab Center. I know you’re from Texas – is there such a place there where you live? And is the last paragraph based on your real… Read more »

Fuji
Fuji(@fuji)
Reply to  Margarida Brei
1 year ago

After I read your reply Margarida, I looked up South Padre Island and was really impressed with the ecological work they are doing there. How nice for you to be able to visit and to share with all of us this amazing place, and also to highlight the horrors of… Read more »

Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
1 year ago

It was a very heartbreaking but encouraging and inspiring story, Margarida. The idea about reuse, reduce and recycle are still proven effective to protect not only the turtles but all the marine life and its ecosystem and also the earth. Well done.

Susan Dawson
Susan Dawson(@susan-dawson)
1 year ago

I was drawn in by the photo and your story made me realise the hard work ahead of all of us but that we can each do our bit. I was amused to see a few zs creeping into your ‘English spellings’ – Texas must be suiting you

Susan Dawson
Susan Dawson(@susan-dawson)
Reply to  Margarida Brei
1 year ago

It was tongue in cheek, not a rebuke.

Alan Kemister
Alan Kemister(@alan-kemister)
Reply to  Margarida Brei
1 year ago

Your comment about the new form of plastic pollution from disposable gloves and masks points out how difficult it is to make progress on these pollution problems. We’re always encountering new pressures like fighting COVID that introduce new sources of pollution. And individuals feel so powerless. Often, all we can… Read more »

Dipayan Chakrabarti
Dipayan Chakrabarti(@dipayan-chakrabarti)
1 year ago

This story successfully raises awareness of the miserable plight of the turtles and other marine species either threatened or endangered because of water pollution. Nice work, Margarida.

Dipayan Chakrabarti
Dipayan Chakrabarti(@dipayan-chakrabarti)
Reply to  Margarida Brei
1 year ago

You’re welcome, Margarida. Of course we’re not doing enough to protect the environment from all kinds of pollution and global heating.

Christer Norrlof
Christer Norrlof(@christer-norrlof)
1 year ago

A very insightful and horrifying, yet fascinating and optimistic exposé, Margarida. We all need to know what’s going on and what we can do to help.

Leyla Unerli
Leyla Unerli(@leyla-unerli)
1 year ago

Your story is absolutely amazing! The turtles are one of my favorite animals and plastic is one of the worst things ever. Your story is very well-written and knows how to connect with people, especially me. The amount of pollution you listed is terrible and more than it was when… Read more »

Recent Comments







Voice.club hosts SubClubs and Voice Apps

Voice.club hosts SubClubs and Voice Apps

Featuring -

When you SignIn with Google, your support helps Voice.club continue our family-friendly mission.

18
0
Selected Authors may submit comments (5 Credits)x
()
x
Scroll to Top

Sharing a Post

Why do my friends need to SignIn to read the post I shared?

Actually, this is a voting security feature. During public voting, only club members can read posts submitted for that contest. Since anyone reading the story is able to vote (click the Like button), we reserve these capabilities to members who SignIn. Before we implemented this security feature, people were voting multiple times and making the public voting process unfair and out of balance. To fix this, our staff finally decided to allow only members who SignIn to read the stories. Membership is free and easy, and ensures our club is safe, secure, and family-friendly!