news Friday, January 23, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute | January 23, 2015 | 09.20 am IST After over 300 turtles were washed up ashore along the Chennai coast in the last few months, a two-day trial was conducted using a turtle excluder device. A net fitted with a turtle excluder device(TED) was used by fishermen which provided a net fitted with an escape flap for the turtles to slip out of the net, reported Times of India. TED designed after studying international models was fitted to nets and then tested four times during the trial. However, some fishermen were worried that some of the catch could escape along with the turtles, said the report. According to the report, fishermen have not volunteered to use the device and fishing officials don't have the authority to enforce regulation.                                                                                                                     Turtles washed up ashore near Kovalam The tests come in the wake of mass deaths of endangered Olive Ridley turtles along Chennai’s beaches, reported an earlier TOI article. Most of the turtles drowned after being tangled in fishing nets, said the report. The suggestion to use TED was given by the Forest Department and an environmental organisation to the fishing community at Kasimedu fishing harbour to be used instead of the regular fishing nets in which turtles get trapped and die. TEDs are mandatory in other countries, but are used in India only in the state of Odisha according to Supraja Dharini, founder of the Trust for Environment Education (TREE) Foundation, said the New Indian Express.  Once attached, the turtles can easily escape from the nets. Even if caught, they can strike against the metal grid bars and escape through the opening, said the report.  Tweet Follow @thenewsminute

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