Environment: A growing number of turtles with fibropapillomatosis


"Unfortunately, we found this green turtle with fibropapillomatosis swimming around our dive site" The Bridge ".

As you can see, the sea turtle has an impressive number of tumors on the body, "wrote Sint Maarten Nature in a Facebook post on June 19 with photos. It is not the first time that turtles with fibropapillomatosis have swim in the waters of Saint Martin. "We have seen an increasing number of cases in recent years" underlines Julien Chalifour, head of the scientific center at the Saint-Martin Nature Reserve.

Described for the first time in 1938 in green turtles captured in Florida, fibropapillomatosis is now present everywhere in the world, with however very variable rates of attack. “An alphaherpesvirus is thought to be the causative agent of the disease, although there is no real proof of its causation. The disease exists throughout the world, suggesting a multifactorial cause rather than single factors or agents. Possible factors include certain parasites, bacteria, environmental pollutants, ultraviolet rays, changes in water temperature, and biotoxins. Even physiological factors such as stress and immunological status appear to be associated with FP. In recent years, we have seen a sharp reduction in the quality of our water, which may play some role in this sea turtle disease. Scientific research has established a link between excess nitrogen (wastewater) that accumulates in the algae that sea turtles eat, ”explains the Sint Maarten Nature Foundation. What Julien Chalifour confirms: “as for humans, herpes is triggered under the action of stress. This is why it is recommended not to stress the turtles or touch them ”.

(More details on www.soualigapost.com)

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