Captive Sea Turtles Constitute a Health Threat to Tourists

Exposure to bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites are the main concerns

By on February 6th, 2013 21:51 GMT

Yesterday's issue of JRSM Short Reports witnessed the publication of a new study stating that captive sea turtles constitute a health threat to tourists. Interestingly enough, the study maintains that interactions with wild turtles are far less dangerous.

According to the researchers who looked into this issue, tourists who for one reason or another decide to spend some time interacting with sea turtles while visiting various holiday attractions must first and foremost worry about their becoming exposed to bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites.

Furthermore, they must be aware of the fact that their occasionally indulging in turtle-meat dishes sold at restaurants located close to such holiday attractions might translate into their ingesting toxic contaminants.

Although not often, this exposure to pathogens and contaminants can lead to people's developing septicemia, pneumonia, meningitis and acute renal failure.

Apparently, these captive sea turtles kept either at farms, where they are raised for their meat, or at other similar facilities, only threaten the health of the tourists who come into contact with them because they are made to live in confined pools.

EurekAlert! quotes Clifford Warwick, a researcher working with the Emergent Disease Foundation, who made a case of how, “Significantly, the captive farming of turtles arguably increases the threat to health, in particular from bacteria, due to the practice of housing many turtles in a relatively confined space and under intensive conditions.”

“Significantly, the captive farming of turtles arguably increases the threat to health, in particular from bacteria, due to the practice of housing many turtles in a relatively confined space and under intensive conditions,” Clifford Warwick went on to add.

Following their reaching these conclusions, the specialists who carried out this study ask that tourists avoid consuming various dishes derived from sea turtles, regardless of the species.

As well as this, health-care professionals are urged to be on the lookout for any symptoms similar to those of gastrointestinal disorders and flu.
Study warns that captive sea turtles contitute a threat to tourists
   Study warns that captive sea turtles contitute a threat to tourists
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