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Splitlip
10-08-2007, 21:28
No not a joke,
Why do so many people who have the opportunity to dive in the oceans, feel they need to grab and torment a sea turtle..for what, impress the girls?
Come on please. It is illegal, unhealthy for the animal and just plain wrong. And you know what, once you do it, divers will never get close to the turtle again.
Yesterday group of "divers" from someplace up south, harassed and probably chased off for good, one of the old (and disabled) turtles that the locals cared for.
Go grab onto a snapping turtle or gator you ignorant clowns.

BobArnold8265
10-08-2007, 21:35
I couldn't agree with you more !!! It's beyond just turtles though. You shouldn't be touching or harassing any of the creatures you encounter. Please show some respect to the animals and also let future diver's enjoy the sites that you are seeing today !!!!

Splitlip
10-08-2007, 21:42
Thanks Bob. Of course all the marine life needs to be respected.
The turtle thing sets me off because my daughter and I once helped rescue one. They named her Maggie at the rehab center. Unfortunately she died. We went on to "adopt" a couple more here http://www.marinelife.org/.
People feel the need to torment them, and I cannot comprehend why.

Splitlip
10-08-2007, 21:45
While I am on a soap box, anyone can "adopt" a turtle.
http://www.marinelife.org/adopt_a_turtle.htm

datamunk
10-08-2007, 21:58
have you ever gone to see the leatherbacks go and lay eggs on the beach in the stuart to jupiter area, splitlip?

comet24
10-08-2007, 22:05
I agree with you but what if the turtle molests you.

Seriously. I dove in the Baltimore Aquarium and in the ray tank there is a sea turtle. If you kneel on the bottom he likes to come up to you and put his head between your legs and tries to push you around.

Splitlip
10-08-2007, 22:06
have you ever gone to see the leatherbacks go and lay eggs on the beach in the stuart to jupiter area, splitlip?

Yes, we used to go pretty often. The "turtle walks" were always fun. Good excuse for a party. I have always lived pretty close to the beach, and it was better than being out on the road Friday nights :smiley2:.

Splitlip
10-08-2007, 22:19
I agree with you but what if the turtle molests you.

Seriously. I dove in the Baltimore Aquarium and in the ray tank there is a sea turtle. If you kneel on the bottom he likes to come up to you and put his head between your legs and tries to push you around.

Yeah, there are some turtles that seem to want to get scratched and will come up to people for that.

But, I am pretty sure diving down on some sleeping turtle, grabbing her from behind, swinging her like Triple H to impress your friends while she goes into a panic trying to break for the surface, is not in the animal's best interest.

Truly, there are those who don't see the difference though.
One of my DM friends got on couple of clowns for doing just that. There comment on the surface was they had seen him "petting" one of the turtles.

Best bet I guess, is hands off for everybody.

danielh03
10-09-2007, 00:52
All I can say is, "leave it better than you found it". So many of us forget the first rule of the wild.

tbuckalew
10-09-2007, 11:38
Agree with everything! And, if a turtle comes up to you, you can't stop that. You just can't approach the turtle. They are curious enough that you can be near them without scaring them off - as long as everyone follows the rules.

fire diver
10-09-2007, 12:29
Yeah, that type of behavior really makes me mad. I love seeing turtles, rays, eels, and all the different types of marine life when I dive in the ocean. Why can't some people understand that harrasment of the wildlife will only drive them off? I 've never seen it personally, but have heard many divers talking about doing it, and it just ticks me off. I'd like to cut thier airhoses, so they can't make another dive and harrass the sealife.

FD

No Misses
10-09-2007, 12:36
Here's a turtle story, from this last June, for ya.

The surface conditions in Ft. Lauderdale were perfect on Saturday. The drawback of perfect conditions is that every fisherman and his brother are anchored over every divable wreck in the area. I ended up doing a lot of running on plane, while attempting to find structure to drop on. While running I noticed what appeared to be a turtle in distress. It was doing considerable splashing on the surface. I did a 180 and idled back to see if it was tangled in line or something. I reached the turtle at about the same time that a sportfish trolling baits closed from the opposite direction. So, here we are looking down at a pair of mating turtles. The only distress was the male trying to maintain his position on top. We all had a chuckle at our Good Samaritan effort turned voyeurism. Our laughter was quickly interrupted by shouting coming from the back of the sportfish. I was seconds away from running over their baits! I dropped both motors in reverse just in time to see the right outrigger bait cross under my bow. Now I really felt like a dumb ass. Not only had I interrupted the turtles. Now I was blindly running over trolled baits! If the shoe would have been on the other foot, I would have been cussing (me) so loud that people on shore would have been shocked.

No Misses
10-09-2007, 12:49
Turtle story #2

I was diving in Ft. Lauderdale with a fisherdog. We had a juvenile logger head swim up to check us out. This in itself was unusual, since most turtles swim away. He swam in circles around us. He even passed between us at one point. After several minutes of this he swam off. Later in the same dive he approached us from behind. He grabbed “Fishdog’s” fin and gave it a tug. She looked back expecting me. Instead it was this same juvenile turtle. It was like he was trying to say, “Hey, stay here and play with me”. But, unfortunately time and air were getting short and we had to end the dive.

No Misses
10-09-2007, 12:58
Turtle story #3

We were Spearfishing in the Dry Tortugas area (not the sanctuary). We saw a turtle wrapped up in fishing net. One of the divers swam down and cut the net away while straddling the turtle. If there was ever an opportunity to take a picture of a diver “molesting” a turtle, that would have been the one. If you take away the danger of the net, it looked like they were trying to mate! For the rest of the trip he was known as the turtle f*@#er. No good deed goes unpunished by your friends ;-)

P.S. the turtle swam away with a satisfied smile.

caroln
10-09-2007, 15:30
Remember not to hover directly over the turtles either. They need to surface occasionally to breathe and you'll stress them out if you're blocking their path to get air. Imagine some big giant hovering over your head when you're about to run out of air, and think how you'd feel about it.

If you want to support a group trying to help the turtles, visit these guys next time you're down in Mexico http://ceakumal.org/

ScubaJ
10-09-2007, 16:27
Well said Daniel.
Whether it be aquatic life, the water in general, or the land surrounding water. Enjoy it, and leave it as good or better. Too many people are oblivious and simply trash nature.

eyezz
10-09-2007, 17:37
Some people just don't think !!
They would hate it if, some one was touch and holding on to then while diving or if a bull shark was trying to mount them LOL!!!

ScaredSilly
10-09-2007, 17:44
While in Belize I had to call off the DM who was not so gently trying to point out a stone fish with his knife (not trying to injure it just harash it into moving). After about the third poke I grabbed his wrist and him the signal for "I-see-Fricken-fish". Earlier the other divers had a Puffer fish into puffing and wanted to show us. I got a glance - gave a look of disgust and went in the opposite direction.

Of course in Costa Rica I got the opposite when I shook a tree in the jungle when some monkey's started yelling at us. Seems that shaking the tree is a sign of aggression so they shat on us.

eyezz
10-09-2007, 17:44
Turtle story #2

I was diving in Ft. Lauderdale with a fisherdog. We had a juvenile logger head swim up to check us out. This in itself was unusual, since most turtles swim away. He swam in circles around us. He even passed between us at one point. After several minutes of this he swam off. Later in the same dive he approached us from behind. He grabbed “Fishdog’s” fin and gave it a tug. She looked back expecting me. Instead it was this same juvenile turtle. It was like he was trying to say, “Hey, stay here and play with me”. But, unfortunately time and air were getting short and we had to end the dive.

Hey No misses, What a great dive you guys had, I had no idea turtle's would do some thing like that I have had small fish try to bite my hand when I was lobstering.:smiley20:

BuzzGA
10-09-2007, 20:06
If someone is going to grab a turtle, why not pull the tail of a shark while they are at it. Maybe the reaction of the latter will cure the urge to touch things underwater

chace_nicole
10-09-2007, 20:24
sad to hear the hands off rule doesn't really apply, unless trying to help of course. I hope to see a turtle on my next dive, beautiful creatures.

Ramgib
10-09-2007, 22:19
On a dive in West Palm, a couple of divers were poking at a turtle with their lobster ticklers. Kept tapping the turtle on the back, head and feet until the poor turtle finally was able to get away.
Back on the boat, the Capt was told about the incident. The capt. grabbed a tickler and started tapping and poking at the two divers. One of the divers said "What the F**K is wrong with you?" The capt. said "I'm sure the turtle didn't like it any better" The rest of the divers started clapping. Both divers apoligized saying they guessed they weren't thinking. The DM then gave a quick talk about looking and not touching.
I wish all DM would give such a talk during the dive briefing.

Splitlip
10-09-2007, 22:48
On a dive in West Palm, a couple of divers were poking at a turtle with their lobster ticklers. Kept tapping the turtle on the back, head and feet until the poor turtle finally was able to get away.
Back on the boat, the Capt was told about the incident. The capt. grabbed a tickler and started tapping and poking at the two divers. One of the divers said "What the F**K is wrong with you?" The capt. said "I'm sure the turtle didn't like it any better" The rest of the divers started clapping. Both divers apoligized saying they guessed they weren't thinking. The DM then gave a quick talk about looking and not touching.
I wish all DM would give such a talk during the dive briefing.

Which op? That is great to hear!
I would like to give them an "attaboy". I sometimes dress down the guys if I don't think they are doing enough to promote appropriate behavior.

Have I mentioned this? http://www.marinelife.org/
Please, if you are in the area, pay a visit. It is not Disney World, but they do great things. Don't cost nothing...but you will be happy to contribute once you see what they do.

edit. And you are so right!!
They need to give the talk during the briefing. But the fact is, they really don't expect people to behave that way. It is the old warm pee thing. The ops will include this in their breifings for the next 2 or three trips, but then..

cyclone
10-09-2007, 23:30
I second emotion. Yep, seen it here and there. You can even watch it on youtube. We have a lot of those in the Philippines and always seen this with a group of first time divers in the Ocean and oh boy!!! they chase these turtles like they own them.

Pls...Leave Brittney Alone!!! ooops! what I mean leave the turtles alone.
Take only pictures and don't chase them...

Ramgib
10-10-2007, 00:12
On a dive in West Palm, a couple of divers were poking at a turtle with their lobster ticklers. Kept tapping the turtle on the back, head and feet until the poor turtle finally was able to get away.
Back on the boat, the Capt was told about the incident. The capt. grabbed a tickler and started tapping and poking at the two divers. One of the divers said "What the F**K is wrong with you?" The capt. said "I'm sure the turtle didn't like it any better" The rest of the divers started clapping. Both divers apoligized saying they guessed they weren't thinking. The DM then gave a quick talk about looking and not touching.
I wish all DM would give such a talk during the dive briefing.

Which op? That is great to hear!
I would like to give them an "attaboy". I sometimes dress down the guys if I don't think they are doing enough to promote appropriate behavior.

Have I mentioned this? http://www.marinelife.org/
Please, if you are in the area, pay a visit. It is not Disney World, but they do great things. Don't cost nothing...but you will be happy to contribute once you see what they do.

edit. And you are so right!!
They need to give the talk during the briefing. But the fact is, they really don't expect people to behave that way. It is the old warm pee thing. The ops will include this in their breifings for the next 2 or three trips, but then..

The dive OP was Koller's Reef. Capt. Singer sold the boat a couple years back. We miss him.

ScubaJenn81
10-10-2007, 06:09
While I am on a soap box, anyone can "adopt" a turtle.
http://www.marinelife.org/adopt_a_turtle.htm


That might make a good holiday/birthday gift for someone that is hard to buy for....hint, hint

RoadRacer1978
10-10-2007, 13:08
While I am on a soap box, anyone can "adopt" a turtle.
http://www.marinelife.org/adopt_a_turtle.htm


That might make a good holiday/birthday gift for someone that is hard to buy for....hint, hint

Yeah, especilly for a tutrle/animal lover or the diver on your holiday list.

DZorn00
10-10-2007, 13:44
I think I will adopt a turtle for my daughter for her birthday. She would love that. And she loves to help any animal she can. Thanks for the info....

Splitlip
10-10-2007, 16:59
On a dive in West Palm, a couple of divers were poking at a turtle with their lobster ticklers. Kept tapping the turtle on the back, head and feet until the poor turtle finally was able to get away.
Back on the boat, the Capt was told about the incident. The capt. grabbed a tickler and started tapping and poking at the two divers. One of the divers said "What the F**K is wrong with you?" The capt. said "I'm sure the turtle didn't like it any better" The rest of the divers started clapping. Both divers apoligized saying they guessed they weren't thinking. The DM then gave a quick talk about looking and not touching.
I wish all DM would give such a talk during the dive briefing.

Which op? That is great to hear!
I would like to give them an "attaboy". I sometimes dress down the guys if I don't think they are doing enough to promote appropriate behavior.

Have I mentioned this? http://www.marinelife.org/
Please, if you are in the area, pay a visit. It is not Disney World, but they do great things. Don't cost nothing...but you will be happy to contribute once you see what they do.

edit. And you are so right!!
They need to give the talk during the briefing. But the fact is, they really don't expect people to behave that way. It is the old warm pee thing. The ops will include this in their breifings for the next 2 or three trips, but then..

The dive OP was Koller's Reef. Capt. Singer sold the boat a couple years back. We miss him.

Yes. They were very good about that.

dludwig
10-10-2007, 19:02
Good for the Captain. :smiley32:

RoadRacer1978
10-10-2007, 19:54
More captains like that and the punks out there messing with the animal life might think twice.

Splitlip
10-10-2007, 20:53
Wow! I am happy to see the responses that resulted from my venting in the 1st post.

Glad to see the people talking about adopting a turtle. The Holidays are around the corner!

http://www.marinelife.org/adopt_a_turtle.htm

It was never my intent to promote this, but fact is, this is more rewarding than the international star registry or the pet rock.

I live up the street from this place and for the first 12 years of her life, I took my daughter every weekend. They really are an amazing operation. All volunteers and all their monies come from donations.

If you are in the area, please make a point to visit. Kids love interacting with the rescued turtles.
http://www.marinelife.org/index.htm

Disneymom
10-10-2007, 21:07
This looks like an amazing facility. If we ever get to that part of FL, I'd like to take the disneydaughter there. I think she'd absolutely love it.

I was going to have her read this thread, but she said she didn't want to get depressed (it would have pissed her off, actually). She sent me a text today while she was in class watching a film on marine life, and said "Mom, the baby sea turtles are DYING!!"

I read this thread this morning and was appalled (alas, but not surprised) at what humans are doing to these magnificent animals. I LOVED the story about the boat captain and the lobster tickler.

I see an adopted turtle in her stocking! :icon_cheesygrin_xma

russp
10-18-2007, 17:34
As responsible divers and keepers of what's left of this planet, we need to stop treating animals as disposible play things. Don't ride the turtles, dolphins, rays; just appreciate them when you see them. The places that pen dolphins for people to harass really annoy me.

DevilDiver
10-18-2007, 17:45
Great organization that does allot for turtles. Check out the web site.....

http://www.turtlehospital.org/index.htm

The Turtle Hospital

(Hidden Harbor Marine Environmental Project, Inc.)

The Turtle Hospital was opened in 1986 with four main goals: 1) repair injured sea turtles and return them to the wild, 2) educate the public through outreach programs to local schools, 3) conduct and assist with research which aids the sea turtles (in conjunction with state universities), and 4) work toward environmental legislation which makes the beaches and water safe and clean for sea turtles.

DZorn00
10-19-2007, 13:02
I have heard a few things about the Death of Steve Irwin and the whole "molesting" comment came up about what he was doing to the Ray right before it stuck him. Not saying Sea turtles will kill someone but I am sure that they could definatly do some harm. That alone should discourage people.

fyrediver
10-24-2007, 20:22
We've seen several down here in Curacao, and we just wave, get a picture, and press on. One of our idiot ex-dive buddies, on a wreck dive, pestered and tormented what looked like a sea snake. I couldn't get down to him, as I just lost a 4lb. brick, but when we came to shore, I told him if he were my eight year old son, I'd take my belt to him right there. We later found out that it wasn't snake, but a type of docile eel, but HE didn't know that, and many sea snakes are deadly. I don't touch stuff.

DZorn00
10-25-2007, 11:46
I am a little bit hesitant to dive with a couple of my friends because they are like that on land. i can only imagine how they would be under the water. Idiots

diversteve
10-25-2007, 21:32
A couple years ago a group of us were diving a Caribbean dive site. We'd seen turtles all week so it wasn't uncommon for them to be nearby. I was off to the side so this is second hand but it's from a buddy I trust.

One of the "experienced" divers saw a smaller turtle swim by and grabbed it while her buddy took her picture. Then she handed it off to her buddy for another picture. The buddy is a DM so should've known better.

My buddy who observed it swears he heard the turtle squawk during the handoff. Back on the boat, he called them on it and the diveop manager also told them that doing stuff like that stresses them out enormously.

We don't dive with them anymore...

Disneymom
10-25-2007, 21:47
You know - this is just me, but the whole idea of divers harassing/molesting/teasing and just generally treating marine life poorly just disgusts me.

As divers we should bear more responsibility than the general public for respecting our marine life - be it large turtles, sharks, or porpoise, or be it sponges and corals. We have the opportunity to see it, and with our training I think we have a responsibility to protect it. Not to mention the laws protecting some of the endangered life. Not saying the general public shouldn't have the same responsibility, but we can help educate them, and should. Seems there's a fair share of divers that need to be educated, too.

K- off soapbox now.

pnevai
10-25-2007, 22:10
posing with and riding larger turtles is fairly common in Asia as well as eating them, so long as it is not in a marine sanctuary.

As far as striking another person with a metal wand, well that is Battery and in front of witnesses no less and could have had the boat captain arrested and the loss of his commercial captains license.

I do not agree to the conduct of the first, and would not tolerate the actions of the second.

Ramgib
10-25-2007, 23:09
Capt wasn't "striking" the offending diver. He was poking at him with the tickler.

UCFKnightDiver
10-25-2007, 23:10
i hate things like this will never molest sea life, unless its lobsters :)

pnevai
10-25-2007, 23:21
Capt wasn't "striking" the offending diver. He was poking at him with the tickler.

Still considered assault, If it were hard enough to hurt, then it would have been Assault with intent to do bodily harm, after that it can be construed as Assault with a deadly weapon.

Divers being morons with the turtle, was no excuse for the charter crew to be morons with people.

cyclone
10-26-2007, 01:20
What can I say, I think it's the attitude of each individual. Some people just don't have respect with nature. They were given the chance to dive and see the beauty of the ocean and underneath it. Some take the advantage and joy of touching, chasing and molesting them.
One story also is when we went to snorkle with the manatees. At first, they told us not to chase them. But as the group get excited so much their urge to touch and chase them just kick in, and voila the next time you knew it the poor manatees were being molested.:smiley13:

Disneymom
10-26-2007, 07:58
Capt wasn't "striking" the offending diver. He was poking at him with the tickler.I don't know.... I think the DM was trying to get a point across, that the guy might not have gotten any other way. I'm afraid I'd have applauded the DM.

You can look at it like this: It's not unlike an intruder coming into OUR homes and assaulting/molesting one of us. The argument can be made that 'it's different, they're animals and they're not intelligent', or whatever. Not an excuse, IMO. That's their home, and technically we're the intruders. We just don't have the right to do whatever we please with the marine life just for the thrill of it or cause we thought it was 'cool' at the time. And I'm talking eels, sharks, turtles, rays, porpoise, coral, sponge... most particularly endangered!


i hate things like this will never molest sea life, unless its lobsters :)Now THAT'S another story.... :smiley36: Pass the clarified butter, please.

Disneymom
10-26-2007, 08:02
One story also is when we went to snorkle with the manatees. At first, they told us not to chase them. But as the group get excited so much their urge to touch and chase them just kick in, and voila the next time you knew it the poor manatees were being molested.:smiley13:true. they (and we) fare a lot better in the encounter by them coming to us than us chasing them. And technically, legally speaking, we can't pursue them. We saw that during our encounter last week. I had one swim right under me a couple times - and I felt like I invaded his/her space! On the other hand, the juvenile would come right up to us and pretty much demand to be scratched.

AquaGirl
11-04-2007, 00:50
All I can say is, "leave it better than you found it". So many of us forget the first rule of the wild.

I too have a true story about saving a turtle- hopefully my avatar works and you can see I'm not lying:smiley2:.

We were tripletail fishing a few miles outside of Naples Bay, FL and I saw my first sea turtle ever! (OMG, can I say I was fishing on here or am I going to be torn a new one? I'm new, but back to the story). So we saw her and kept going because we thought she was eating off the crab pot line and didn't want to disturb her. So an hour or so later we drive right past the line again and she's still there.
So...long story REAL short, she was tangled in the crab pot line, I dove in after her to try to free her by hand because I refused to let her die by either drowning eventually or at the hands of the crabbers. (I dove in with only a swim suit on- so it didn't work too well - but that's my level of commitment people!!!) We did finally snag the line with a grappling hook, fight her back to the boat and cut her free. I have photos of the rescue and contacted ALL of the Florida/Turtle rescue groups to document the event.
All of the rescue orgs said she would have died if we had just left her there, she was a healthy, teenage, female loggerhead and obviously crucial to their species survival (let alone one of Nature's creatures)

I cry everytime I tell the story because it's the thing I'm so far most proud of in life.

So anyhow, I'm new, Hi, and had I had scuba gear at the time it would have made the rescue A LOT easier - I think a sharp knife will be my second buy!