CAUGHT: Sea Shepherd found an endangered female loggerhead turtle in the shark nets off Ballina.
CAUGHT: Sea Shepherd found an endangered female loggerhead turtle in the shark nets off Ballina.

WATCH: Shark nets could be a danger to nesting turtles

NESTING turtles may crop up in the shark nets over the next few days to weeks as they try to get to shore to lay, marine activists fear.

Sea Shepherd crew have been patrolling netted beaches on the North Coast this week monitoring the shark nets which were "riddled with by-catch".

Skipper Jonathan Clark has done several net runs over the past week or so.

"In the six runs we've discovered seven animals in shark nets and one in SMART drumlines," Mr Clark said.

"Out of seven, zero were targeted species and only three were released alive."

This included an endangered female loggerhead turtle.

"The female turtle may well have been carrying eggs and that's going to happen in the next couple of days," Mr Clark said.

"Lennox Beach is where turtles come to lay their eggs but we fear the nets may catch these nesting turtles.

"It is peak breeding season for this species and every individual counts."

He said they were out there "trying to bring some transparency to what's happening".

By-catch data released on the website is just numbers.


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