June 1, 2023, MĀʻALAEA, MAUI, HI – As Maui Ocean Center prepares to celebrate World Oceans Day on June 8, the nonprofit MOC Marine Institute has reached an impressive milestone: 1,000 sea turtles rescued on the island of Maui.
MOC Marine Institute rescues sick and injured sea turtles on Maui and rehabilitates sea turtles in need of long-term medical care from the main Hawaiian Islands. Since 2019, MOC Marine Institute has rescued 1,000 sea turtles on Maui. More than 85 percent of the injuries documented were due to interactions with fishing gear.
“Through the unwavering dedication of our team of staff, volunteers and interns — and the overwhelming support of our community — we celebrate the rescue of 1,000 sea turtles,” said Tommy Cutt, executive director of MOC Marine Institute. “It is truly a testament to the power of collective action and a brighter future for our ocean.”
In addition to MOC Marine Institute, other conservation groups that will be represented during Maui Ocean Center’s World Oceans Day include Whale Trust, Maui Nui Seabird Recovery Project and The Nature Conservancy.
The celebration will last from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, June 8, with family-friendly activities including face painting, live music and marine naturalist presentations. Additionally, a Coral Explore Station will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and children’s book author Ali Miller will read (and sign) her book about coral bleaching, “How Cara Lost Her Color,” at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Discounted admission for kama’āina, with valid Hawai’i state ID, is $10 per person for ages 4 and older (ages 3 and younger are free). Tickets can be ordered at mauioceancenter.com/tickets
World Oceans Day is held each year on June 8 to celebrate and honor the oceans that connect us.
“Something everyone can do to help our oceans is reduce their use of single-use plastics. Choosing reusable alternatives helps protect the fragile ecosystems we have here in Hawai‘i,” said Maui Ocean Center General Manager Tapani Vuori. “Remember to bring your reusable bottles to fill up when you visit Maui Ocean Center for World Oceans Day.”
For more information about MOC Marine Institute, visit mocmarineinstitute.org. To report a sick or injured sea turtle on Maui, contact MOC Marine Institute at (808) 286-2549.