Alright a bad situation that could have been WAY worse yesterday! I was sitting with my Mom on beach on the North side of the island and saw a honu on beach. I asked my Mom if she minded if I went to grab my camera and take some quick shots. Of course she said go ahead because she rocks. While taking pictures and reviewing them in my camera I noticed a lure in his neck. This really bothers me and wish fishermen wouldn't cause this to happen so much and be more conscious of the honu in the waters. I felt I could safely remove it without too much issue. Yup not the case! I approached the turtle slowly and respectfully and he pretty much wanted no part of me which I understand. Attempting to touch him and go to an area I am sure he knew was sensitive was absolutely not on his agenda. I reached for the hook and he was off. I got in front of him to slow him down and reached for it another time and removed it. Yeah right!!!! No not the case and Mr. Honu wasn't done with me yet. There was a line in his mouth I went to try and see what was going on and he was not stopping for anything or anyone including me! The hook flew into my finger and was deep enough to be yanking on my skin and finger and in there good....and the other end was connected to this turtle flying into the water and I had a $5k camera in my other hand. Awesome right ALL while my Mom watched and tourists looked on in horror I'm sure like I was probably killing this poor turtle or something. I thought he was going to rip off my finger literally and went from a bit of concern to OH S#$T! Yes a bit of panic kicked in as the turtle was hightailing for the ocean with me attached to him by a hook in my finger and it freaking hurt!!! Somehow I managed to free the hook from my finger and one hook successfully removed but not sure of the other fishing line in his mouth because I just couldn't focus on it. You may be able to see in the image of the honu here that there is a hook lodged in his neck...that is gone now.
SO...moral of the story. I wanted to help this turtle and feel I did a bit even though I am sure he wasn't happy with me, but maybe some things are better left alone? It's a shame so many turtles are negatively affected by fishermen. I get it that people fish, but to be casting where there are tons of turtles just seems irresponsible to me at least. I see this far too often and it sucks for these poor beautiful ancient Hawaiian creatures. Aloha