Tangled turtle freed by diver — then it comes back to thank him (video)

This is awfully cool.

Colin Sutton & Cameron Dietrich were diving off of Mexico when they found a sea turtle tangled in a rope.

So one of them dove in and attempted to free the turtle, with their handy GoPro camera in hand. Those cameras really are doing an amazing PR campaign – these videos are amazing.

Here’s the turtle and the diver. You can see the rope, and some kind of blue float tied to it:

turtle-1

Here’s a closer look at the rope and the poor turtle’s leg:

turtle-2

Slowly getting untangled – the turtle seems awfully collegial about the whole thing:

turtle-3

Free at last!

turtle-4

Tooter swims off, free and happy:turle-swimming

Then a funny thing happens, Tooter (as I call him) doubles back and starts heading for the guy who freed him:turtle-5

The turtle then swims with the man, face to face:
turtle-6

Then almost chest to chest:turtle-7How cool is that?

Oops, I meant to include the video!


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Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • juliejburns

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  • BillFromDover

    To thank him?

    How do ya know the turtle wasn’t simply sizing the diver up for his next meal?

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  • PeteWa

    lol
    mostly they would be just swimming around and nibbling on the reef.
    I once saw a bunch freak out, darting around like crazy, even at one point swimming right into me (it was a little past dusk) and I started worrying that maybe there was a tiger shark in the vicinity, I’d never seen them behave that way before or since.
    the next day my dad saw in the paper that there had been an earthquake at the same time we were out spearfishing, so it most likely was the earthquake that had disturbed them.

  • ComradeRutherford

    Sea turtles “going about their business.”

    Going to the bank, checking the mail, taking the kids to pre-school…

  • Vicky

    Yeah that’s what I thought too – it doesn’t look like it’s able to use the trapped flipper properly… I wonder how far off-shore they were – would there have been any sense in trying to take it to a vet or something? They probably weren’t equipped for that sort of thing.

  • Butch1

    I’ve always enjoyed these rescue videos. With all the garbage floating around from people leaving discarded articles or just plain garbage tossed into the ocean, it’s going to inevitably come in contact with one of these animals. It’s nice to see them freed.

  • HeartlandLiberal

    If you look closely at the left flipper, you can see a fairly deep indentation on the left flipper. It is quite possible that net has been there quite a while, constricting growth of the limb. I have seen pictures in the past of a turtle which had been entangled around its middle in debris when young, and grown to adulthood with its body misshapen and constricted into a coke bottle shape.Here, I found one example, interestingly not the one I was remembering:

    http://inhabitat.com/peanut-the-story-behind-the-poor-sea-turtle-deformed-by-a-six-pack-ring/

    Here is a report from the the DailyMail in the UK on an example in the context of the great garbage patch, the huge whirlpool of debris from our discarded detritus that is accumulating in the Pacific.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2014849/Victim-great-garbage-patch.html

    Aside from what a downer the above info is, thanks for posting this today, watching the video brought tears to my eyes.

    In the context of the insanity our world is devolving into, the latest example the shoot-down of the Malaysian passenger jet over Ukraine, I am pretty much close to giving up on the human race.

    As for turtles, I grow tomatoes in my garden, 28 varieties this year. I always leave a couple hanging low on the plant as the ripen, because the turtles that live in the woods lining our lot come in at night and help themselves. It is the least I can do to help them survive.

    One year while cutting the grass, I ran the mower over one who had nestled in a depression alongside the strawberry bed, I did not see him in time. Thankfully the mower only took off a thin layer of shell on top. We called a wild life expert we located in the state, and followed his advice. We cleaned the area, and put epoxy glue on it, and let it dry a couple hours, then let him go. He survived, and we saw him from time to time in the yard.

  • basenjilover

    You’re correct. You can see turtle isn’t able to fully utilize his left flipper. I too hope it gets better soon.

  • http://www.americablog.com/ Naja pallida

    Reminds me of a joke of two farmers who come across a sheep caught in a fence. One says: “I wish that was a hot woman.” The other says: “I wish it was dark out.”

  • Thom Allen

    Try this. It usually works pretty well and gets his appropriate body parts nicely receptive. https://tinyurl.com/BestManBait

  • PeteWa

    sadly I think you’re correct.
    some of my favorite experiences in the ocean are swimming next to turtles.
    it’s very easy to get close to them if you snorkel at night, so you can get a nice view of them going about their business.

  • http://heimaey.us/ heimaey

    That would be me…sigh I need to trap the men somehow!

  • taikan

    Sorry to be a downer for all those who like this “feel good” story, but the reality is that after having its left flipper entangled the turtle probably was unable to use it properly even after it had been freed. As a result of having only its right flipper fully operational, the turtle would have been unable to swim in a straight line and thus naturally would swim in circles until (one hopes) its left flipper became fully operational again.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Neat! Thanks John — I needed a bit of ‘up’ news today.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    “Oh, look at me, all helpless with my leg all tied up so I can’t fight back. I hope the hunky diver doesn’t try to take advantage of me!”

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    I forgot to include the video itself! It’s there now :)

  • Indigo

    Ha!

  • joshie

    Aww. This is the kind of feel-good story we need on a day like today.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    Yeah I noticed that too.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    And then they made soup.

  • Indigo

    See there? Decent people exist. So do gracious turtles.

  • annatopia

    absolutely beautiful!

  • LanceThruster

    On a side note, those wet suits are awesome. Just like with skiing, the technology has gotten so impressive since I got started with those sports.

  • LanceThruster

    Years ago I did an overnight boat dive to one of the So Cal Channel Islands. There was a large circular rock grotto, kind of like a large ball field. A dozen or so seals lined up on the far side as if waiting for a turn on a playground slide, and swam straight towards us in a game of chicken and would pull up sharply just before colliding head on. They then modified the game by taking a ‘bite and release’ nip at my snorkel as they passed. We spent the afternoon with them doing this until out air ran out. One almost knocked off my mask (I wore contact lenses) so I put my hand up to shield my face and brushed his belly. I could see him turn his head and open his mouth to show his teeth in case I was making an aggressive move, and then he swam on. I was shocked on seeing him up so close how many scars he had on his body.

  • Sam_Handwich

    FYI
    Malaysia Airlines Flight Reportedly Shot Down Over Ukraine

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/17/malaysia-airlines-plane-cras_n_5595516.html#liveblog

  • LanceThruster

    The happiness of the bee and the dolphin is to exist. For man it is to know that and to wonder at it”

    ― Jacques-Yves Cousteau

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  • Badgerite

    What turtle would not appreciate swimming free and happy?

  • The_Fixer

    Tooter? With all due respect, everyone knows that previously unnamed turtles are called “Yurtle”. Look it up :)

  • http://heimaey.us/ heimaey

    Maybe it’s a gay turtle just trying to cruise the hot diver?

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