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View Full Version : Volunteers Needed - Sea Turtles Need Pilots


Joness0154
11-21-2014, 08:31 AM
Just received this email through NAFI. I'd help if I were on the east coast but I'm freezing my tush off in the midwest.

Endangered Sea Turtles Need Pilots, Planes

There is an immediate need to fly sea turtles that have stranded themselves on the east coast. They need to be flown to rescue facilities in the southeast. The endangered turtles are experiencing a "state of emergency" due to recent cold temperatures and strong onshore winds in the northeast. More than 150 endangered sea turtles were stranded on Cape Cod alone, and many are suffering from hypothermia.

The non-profit New England Aquarium is working to stabilize as many sea turtles as possible but lacks resources to house this unprecedented number. There is immediate need to fly sea turtles to other facilities, including the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, the South Carolina Aquarium, and to other facilities in Florida and North Carolina.

We are appealing to all pilots and aircraft owners for help. If you are able to help with this transport please contact me. I am a member of the Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research through the University of Florida Development Board. I am also the owner of True-Lock LLC. As an aviation company, this is one of our programs showcasing the importance of general aviation to communities.

Please contact me by phone or email if you can help. And my thanks to NAFI for spreading this message to its members, and to the aviation community.

Leslie J. Weinstein
208-375-4846
Leslie@True-Lock.com

AndyRV7
11-21-2014, 10:10 AM
I sent an email. It's going to be a LOT of turtles!!

Vlad
11-21-2014, 10:51 AM
Before sending any emails I have a dumb question I can only ask here. How this charity act works? Is it possible for a group of people just to pool gas money, pick up a turtle or three and fly to Georgia or elsewhere? Or there is a certain red tape involved? I hate red tape my peasized brain couldn't comprehend all the complicacy of irs deduction/non profit thing... The only thing I know I have an RV in great physical shape and I have a free weekend coming.
Appreciate any insight before I contact the above mentioned person.

MarkW
11-21-2014, 10:56 AM
Vlad,
If you want to pay for gas and don't expect to be reimbursed for the expense than there would be no red tape.
I have sent the email and received a response that they did not have details yet. If they have a flight further North than I care to go I will give you a ring Vlad. I can handle the South end.

Noah
11-21-2014, 11:57 AM
Vlad, sounds like a mission for the Flash Mob Squadron. Let's talk offline about plans, wx looks good this weekend. Folks, this is a ripe opportunity for aviation "feel good" stories in the media spotlighting the benefit of GA. What is the pickup airport? I might be interested in a "Northern Half" mission. Any volunteers available for "Southern Half" missions? Halfway meeting points? VA? DE?

N941WR
11-21-2014, 12:07 PM
I would like to help shuttle some of the little guys.
This Saturday looks good but Sunday is going to be ugly.

60av8tor
11-21-2014, 01:21 PM
Vlad, sounds like a mission for the Flash Mob Squadron. Let's talk offline about plans, wx looks good this weekend. Folks, this is a ripe opportunity for aviation "feel good" stories in the media spotlighting the benefit of GA. What is the pickup airport? I might be interested in a "Northern Half" mission. Any volunteers available for "Southern Half" missions? Halfway meeting points? VA? DE?

I live about 20 min N of the Georgia Sea Turtle Center at Jekyll Island - assuming that is a drop off location. I'm down for a southern half, but Bill's right - Sunday 100% change of heavy TS.

Agent Orange
11-21-2014, 01:47 PM
Another dumb question - are these young and how big and heavy are these guys? How many will fit in a 6/7/9 baggage compartment in a container?

AO

Noah
11-21-2014, 03:42 PM
http://wgbhnews.org/post/number-turtles-stranded-cape-cod-charts

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2014/11/21/hundreds-of-stranded-sea-turtles-saved-off-cape-cod-beaches/

http://www.capecod.com/uncategorized/record-loggerhead-large-numbers-turtles-wash-cape-beaches/

http://www.neaq.org/animals_and_exhibits/animals/kemps_ridley_sea_turtle/index.php

strahler13
11-21-2014, 03:48 PM
Who said we wanted them in Georgia?

Vern
11-21-2014, 03:55 PM
I have seen these critters and can't imagine how you would get them in any RV. The Sea Turtle center at Jekyll Island, Ga has a surgery for injured turtles. I speculate most weigh about 300 pounds and are 3-4 feet long.

See http://gstc.jekyllisland.com/

This is a job for a truck or ship I would think.

donaziza
11-22-2014, 11:52 AM
I just called this Leslie Weinstein about these turtles. Turns out this guy lives way out in Idaho. These Turtles are all junior guys, that have been carried in by people. They're about the size of a dinner plate and weigh 6 pounds or so. They're in "cake" boxes, Pizza boxes?? I forget---but they're very lethargic from the cold and can't get out of the boxes and start crawling up your leg. I guess one could stack 5 or 6 boxes, bind them with something besides the shoulder harness and fly. Right now, they're all up in the New England coast, and need to fly to S Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, etc. What we really need is a couple of C 130's. They expect 600 turtles by Monday. Perfect job for the Air National guard. But per Leslie, there's "politics" on this:eek: (What a surprise)

If the mass of turtles can get down south here, SC, GA FL, they would still be looking to dole them out in much smaller numbers to places here in the southeast.

If anyone's got pull with Governors and the ANG, go for it. I'm retired Continental, now United, so Monday AM, I will try giving the Chief Pilot a call out in Denver to see if they might want to throw a 767 at this. Airlines love publicity like this.

donaziza
11-22-2014, 02:37 PM
Hi Don,
Attached is information regarding the need to transport sea turtles out of the New England area. At this time there is around 400 that need to be transported south and by the end of the weekend NOAA estimates over 600. The other problem the facilities in the south are at a maximum capacity already and working to make room. Turtles are packed one to two in banana boxes and weight 4-5 pounds each turtle and are about the size of dinner plates. A flight from Boston to Orlando would work. Turtles need to be moved as soon as possible as the facilities in the north are not adequate for maintaining in the cold weather.
Regards,
Leslie

Leslie J. Weinstein
Manager & Founder
True-Lock LLC
4911 Parkwood Street
Boise, ID 83704
Phone: 208-375-4846
Cell: 208-484-7774
Email: leslie@true-lock.com

AndyRV7
11-23-2014, 05:02 AM
Wow, I saw a Leatherback in one of those videos. Good to know the turtles are small. I still hope to help. Would be a cool sticker for the side of your plane!! :D

Noah
11-23-2014, 06:52 AM
http://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news/Endangered-Sea-Turtles-Need-GA-Transport223138-1.html

dbuds2
11-24-2014, 07:49 AM
Why can't they swim? They make their way all the way around the globe and over 8000 of them find my beach every year.

paul mosher
11-24-2014, 10:13 AM
Why can't they swim? They make their way all the way around the globe and over 8000 of them find my beach every year.

Seriously? Read the article.

Noah
11-27-2014, 08:42 AM
http://www.aopa.org/News-and-Video/All-News/2014/November/25/Turtle-airlift

It has been a rough year for sea turtles, and general aviation is stepping up to help save hundreds of these endangered animals of various species, flying rescued turtles by the dozens from Massachusetts to facilities across the southeast and beyond.

Leslie Weinstein is organizing this improvised airlift, and noted in a Nov. 25 email that it?s a ?long way from being over.? More than 500 stranded turtles have been rescued from Massachusetts beaches, and volunteers and rescue organizations quickly ran out of space to care for and rehabilitate the exhausted turtles, many of them youngsters weighing five pounds or less.

Weinstein, a member of the Development Board of the Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research (http://accstr.ufl.edu/) at the University of Florida, has many friends in general aviation?he also owns an Idaho business that makes specialized fasteners for aircraft (http://www.true-lock.com/#). He has been working the phone and computer quite a lot in recent days, rounding up rides for turtles. He said Pilots N Paws (http://www.pilotsnpaws.org/) has been a key ally, along with many individual pilots and aircraft operators who answered his calls.

?We need more aircraft, we need more people,? Weinstein said in a telephone interview. Facilities in the Carolinas, Florida, and Georgia (including the Georgia Sea Turtle Center on Jekyll Island) have reached capacity, and Weinstein is coordinating with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to find temporary lodging at facilities licensed to care for the endangered species farther afield?including Louisiana and Texas.

Weinstein said a combination of cold water and strong onshore winds has made this year?s migration south much more challenging, and turtles are washing ashore in much greater numbers than usual. Unusually cold water makes the turtles hypothermic, and unable to dive. Stranded on the surface, ?they don?t eat,? Weinstein said. ?Everything starts to shut down.?

Rescued turtles have been brought to the New England Aquarium for triage and initial care, but the turtles require rehabilitation and specialized veterinary care beyond what any single facility can offer. Some have pneumonia, and must be quarantined. Turtles are housed in banana boxes for short-term care and transportation, often two in a box. ?They?ve run out of boxes,? Weinstein said.


While the Rhode Island National Guard volunteered to help, official approvals for the mission have not been forthcoming, forcing Weinstein to rely heavily on general aviation to get the turtles where they need to go.
?We?ve got a lot of pilots responding,? Weinstein said. He hopes more pilots and aircraft operators will email him (including "sea turtles" in the subject line) with offers of assistance?particularly those with larger aircraft, though he is happy to hear from anyone with wings to lend. ?If they can only fit two or three boxes, four boxes? that?s fine with me,? Weinstein said.

The turtle lift will not be over any time soon. Once the rescued turtles are rehabilitated, they will need rides back to the East Coast where they can be released in the Atlantic Ocean. While the numbers may seem relatively small, sea turtles already face long odds when it comes to surviving long enough to breed. Weinstein said it may take 2,000 eggs to produce a single breeding pair, and those turtles may not be able to produce offspring for 30 or 40 years. Losing hundreds of turtles today has significant long-term implications. ?You can see how critical it is to save these turtles,? Weinstein said.

rv7boy
11-28-2014, 07:00 AM
I have seen these critters and can't imagine how you would get them in any RV. The Sea Turtle center at Jekyll Island, Ga has a surgery for injured turtles. I speculate most weigh about 300 pounds and are 3-4 feet long.

See http://gstc.jekyllisland.com/

This is a job for a truck or ship I would think.

These stranded turtles weigh two to ten pounds each. Read this article (http://touch.orlandosentinel.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-82096733/).

RV-4
11-28-2014, 12:40 PM
That's the perfect job for a USAF C-17 or C-5...

Load it up and wham one trip south and that is it..

Make it an official mission like a Nav trainer or a loadmasters training flight..

Aren't Taxpayers owners of these aircrafts after all....

Bruno
rv4@videotron.ca

AndyRV7
12-10-2014, 11:12 AM
Cape Cod Sea Turtle Rescue update Wednesday December 10, 2014

The majority of the sea turtles rescued are Kemps Ridley. All sea turtles are critically endangered, with the Kemp?s Ridley being the most endangered. We have successfully transported over 500 sea turtles thanks to all of you.

Sadly, we are still working on transporting stranded sea turtles out of Cape Cod. Yesterday alone, there were another 40 rescued and brought in for treatment at the Boston Aquarium. Once stabilized these turtles will be on the list to be transported. Currently, I have 85 turtles to be transported to the Gulf States for rehab and release. This flight needs to be flown asap, in order to guarantee the survival of the turtles. A PC12 type ac with seats removed would accommodate the 85 turtles listed below. I can also split the load up with 2 smaller ac. A generous donor without an ac would like to help by paying for the fuel for this mission, if that would be helpful to an owner pilot.

Sea turtles will be loaded and depart from OWD Norwood near the Boston Aquarium.

Gulfport, MS 39501 airport GPT 30 sea turtles

New Orleans, LA 70126 airport NEW 30 turtles

Panama City, FL 32409 airport ECP 25 turtles

Please add sea turtle in the subject when emailing leslie@true-lock.com

Turtles are shipped in banana boxes that measure 19 x 12.5 x 8.25

Turtles are packed 1 to 2 per box and are about the size of dinner plates and 4-5 pounds each.

No water involved with turtles. The transport temperature must be maintained at 70-75 degrees F.

Leslie





Leslie J. Weinstein

Manager & Founder

True-Lock LLC

4911 Parkwood Street

Boise, ID 83704

Phone: 208-375-4846

Cell: 208-484-7774

Email: leslie@true-lock.com

Web: http://www.true-lock.com

gorbak
12-11-2014, 10:24 AM
Leslie, thought I would just throw this out there not knowing how far it might go but here is an idea since you have a generous donor willing to pay fuel costs.

Contact your local Civil Air Patrol to see if they have access to a GA-8 plane. The rear seats (6) can be removed for enormous space to transport turtles in boxes.
CAP is not for hire but they do fly missions for disaster and such. If you get the local squadron to run an inquiry to National Headquarters then an answer should come back timely whether this falls into an acceptable category for CAP flight.

Pat Garboden
Katy, TX
N942PT. RV9A