While walking with her husband on Satellite Beach on Sunday, a woman saw that several baby sea turtles that had apparently been burned to death.
Trigger Warning: Distressing images and descriptions of animal cruelty
A Florida woman made a horrifying discovery while walking with her husband on Satellite Beach on Sunday. She saw that several baby sea turtles that had apparently been burned to death. According to Rhonda Wundke, the baby turtles were blackened and there was burned wood strewn around the scene, FOX35 reported. "I found one dead turtle, then we came upon the burned grave. Then there were just many more burned, dead turtles here and there... the charred wood was around them," she said. "Burned babies everywhere."
@MelbournePolice @FlWildFed @Florida_Today— rhonda wundke (@cherriefairie67) September 2, 2019
I want to report a crime. These baby turtles were found at High Tower Beach today 9/1/19. They have been set in fire. Baby turtles and over there place burned even found an egg. I'm saddened and very angry! pic.twitter.com/Yh4aUpc7j5
Rhonda, shocked and saddened by what she'd seen, decided to seek help from authorities, so she posted images on Twitter. She wrote: @MelbournePolice @FlWildFed @Florida_Today I want to report a crime. These baby turtles were found at High Tower Beach today 9/1/19. They have been set in fire. Baby turtles and over there place burned even found an egg. I'm saddened and very angry!
Very disturbed individuals who would do something like this. I hope they are found, sent for psych help and then do prison time, 10 years per turtle and egg.— Cricket 🇺🇸 (@AbsurdWeb) September 5, 2019
Other Twitters users were understandably horrified by the images. One commenter, SOF Digi-ves-tor, wrote: Hideous, soulless [email protected] Am sorry you discovered. But, very appreciative you shared, and thoughtful enough to report to authorities. Hopefully, justice will be served. Another user, Katrina Hunnewell, added: Wow what is wrong with people and their minds, I just don't understand why anyone could do such a thing.. it saddens me that a human being even has such thoughts, but it's even sadder that they followed through with action so incredibly sad.
WHY would someone do this??? I'm sorry you encountered such a horrific thing, thank you for reporting it. I hope the psycho that did this is lit on fire!— Kathy Baseball (@KathyBaseball) September 5, 2019
Wundke tagged the Melbourne City Police and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWCC) in her original post, hoping that they will take some sort of action or at least begin an investigation into the incident. A few people advised she contact the FWCC directly, so Wundke posted another tweet on Wednesday that said: I'm happy for the outreach. As you can see I was texting out of shock. It was a nightmare in person to see. The storm surges [from Hurricane Dorian] I'm sure have placed these babies into the ocean to rest.
I'm happy for the outreach. As you can see I was texting out of shock. It was a nightmare in person to see. The storm surges I'm sure have placed these babies into the ocean to rest.— rhonda wundke (@cherriefairie67) September 4, 2019
According to Click Orlando, the eggs and hatchlings were near the stairs of the walkway down to Hightower Beach. "The one thing that was horrible is that there was a baby turtle that was kinda still in its egg," Wundke said. "I was like, 'God, they really tortured this thing.'" She added it looked like there had been a party on the beach the night before.
"There was firewood next to all the turtles," she said. "They used torches and tortured them."
I’m speechless at the violence of someone burning baby turtles. I can’t imagine finding the poor babies 💔 I hope the sick monsters are found and euthanized— Ellyn (@ellynrae) September 5, 2019
An FWC spokesman has confirmed there is an ongoing investigation and they are actively seeking for the culprit. Whoever abused the animals will face felony charges. Reports also suggest that there were damages to other turtle nests but that was because of the storm surge and rough waves from Hurricane Dorian. FWC officials said if you spot a sea turtle or nest in distress, call FWC or the Sea Turtle Preservation Society's emergency hotline at 321-206-0646. Please do not try to move turtles or eggs on your own, because doing so is illegal.
What everyone needs to understand is that just like pet torture, the person who did this, no matter their age, will visit violence & destruction on other living creatures, including human. There is more at stake here than the gruesome, pathological torture of baby turtles.— IrishIceSP 🇺🇸 ☘️💟CHIEFS (@IrishIceSP) September 6, 2019