Categorized | International, Local, News, Regional

Caribbean turtle found in Outer Hebrides

 The Scotsman logo 2203368453

A rare leatherback turtle has been spotted in Scottish waters after travelling thousands of miles from the Caribbean.

leatherback turtle in Scottish waters - 803354269Ironically the turtle was recorded between St Kilda and the Isle of Harris by anglers fishing for tuna!

They did not land any tuna but instead saw the 8-ft long turtle swim alongside their boat operated by Kilda Cruises on Friday.

“It just appeared in front of us,” said skipper Angus Campbell.

“We were on a tuna trip heading out to St Kilda when it just swam ahead. It is the first time in 25 years I have seen one. It was a big one too. But as soon as we got reasonably close it just took off. It was some sight. We may not have had any tuna but we caught sight of another exotic species beginning with t instead!”

Leatherback turtles are the largest of all the marine turtles and recognisable from the black, leathery skin that covers its shell.

Only a handful of leatherback turtles are seen in Scottish waters each year – and rarely alive.

Plastic bag and balloon ingestion have also been found as the cause of death in a number of cases. Turtles swallow plastics after mistaking them for jellyfish, one of their staple foods.

Four species of turtle – Kemp’s ridley, leatherback, loggerhead and green – have all been recorded in Scottish waters.

Pic – The leatherback turtle was recorded in waters between St. Kilda and the Isle of Harris. Picture: Getty

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

 The Scotsman logo 2203368453

A rare leatherback turtle has been spotted in Scottish waters after travelling thousands of miles from the Caribbean.

leatherback turtle in Scottish waters - 803354269Ironically the turtle was recorded between St Kilda and the Isle of Harris by anglers fishing for tuna!

They did not land any tuna but instead saw the 8-ft long turtle swim alongside their boat operated by Kilda Cruises on Friday.

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“It just appeared in front of us,” said skipper Angus Campbell.

“We were on a tuna trip heading out to St Kilda when it just swam ahead. It is the first time in 25 years I have seen one. It was a big one too. But as soon as we got reasonably close it just took off. It was some sight. We may not have had any tuna but we caught sight of another exotic species beginning with t instead!”

Leatherback turtles are the largest of all the marine turtles and recognisable from the black, leathery skin that covers its shell.

Only a handful of leatherback turtles are seen in Scottish waters each year – and rarely alive.

Plastic bag and balloon ingestion have also been found as the cause of death in a number of cases. Turtles swallow plastics after mistaking them for jellyfish, one of their staple foods.

Four species of turtle – Kemp’s ridley, leatherback, loggerhead and green – have all been recorded in Scottish waters.

Pic – The leatherback turtle was recorded in waters between St. Kilda and the Isle of Harris. Picture: Getty