We’ve written about the awesome work that locals MG De Cafmeyer and Marika Ireland of Plantastic are doing by turning plastic litter into amazing bangles. These “Plantangles” are made from plastic bags picked up on the streets, beaches and ocean – each one with its own unique story thanks to their geotagging app.

Plantastic recently took their environmental responsibility a step further – pledging R60 for every Plantangle sold to the Two Oceans Aquarium's turtle rehab and release conservation programme.

R60 pays for five days of rehab for a stranded hatchling or injured turtle – every little bit counts when it comes to helping these little ones become strong enough to return to the wild.

Tiny, stranded hatchlings like this depend entirely on human intervention to have any chance of survival in the wild.

Here’s what Plantastic had to say:

Plantastic’s been saying that buying a Plantangle helps “save turtles” all along, because “that piece of plastic around your arm can't kill a turtle, quite simply because it’s no longer 'out there'.”

Although this is true, the thought only really makes sense once you’ve connected a few mental dots, i.e. that plastic bags in our environment eventually find their way into the ocean where they are mistaken for food by many animals – therefore a plastic bag that’s been picked up and crocheted into a Plantangle can no longer wash into the ocean, can no longer be mistaken for food and therefore it can’t harm turtles, seals, birds, whales, etc.

Conservation Coordinator Talitha Noble with Marika Ireland of Plantastic and Two Oceans Aquarium Curator Maryke Musson, talking about turtle conservation.

Deciding to donate R60 per Plantangle towards turtle rehabilitation at the Two Oceans Aquarium makes the impact tangible and direct - suddenly buying a Plantangle is meaningful. Buying a Plantangle is more than buying a bangle or bracelet – it’s like buying a story. Along with the Plantangle, you get a picture of what the plastic bag looked like in the environment, the geolocation of where it was picked up and sometimes some additional detail about the bag pickup.

Meeting Bob and Sandy left us speechless – we weren’t expecting to be so moved by them. Interacting with Bob and Sandy left us beyond excited and totally convinced that we want to be contributing towards turtle rehabilitation at the Two Oceans Aquarium.

Bob and Sandy are two green turtles currently swimming around in the I&J Ocean Exhibit. Bob was brought to us severely ill and eventually pooped out a pile of plastic - he is now well on his way to recovery; Sandy was brought to us with deep gashes in her carapace but she is also doing well.

Bob shares the love.

It's serendipitous that we’re donating towards turtle rehabilitation specifically, because the icon of a turtle has been part of Plantastic’s journey all along – we’ve created turtle charms as gifts for each other, requested turtle tokens on Plantastic’s geotagging app and always remind ourselves “that this bag won’t kill a turtle” when picking up and geotagging plastic bags.

What is a Plantangle?

A Plantangle is a braided bangle made from plastic bags that have been recovered from the environment. Each of these beautiful pieces of jewellery has its own unique story - here's the story of "Milnerton Blue" a Plantangle that Two Oceans Aquarium Curator Maryke Musson got for herself. Quite an amazing journey from waste to wealth!

Step 1. An awful plastic bag was found littering Milnerton Beach.
Step 2. The bag was collected and its location geotagged using the Plantasic app.
Step 3. The bag was then taken home and washed.
Step 4. Together with some other recovered bags, it was hung out to dry.
Step 5. The dried bag was then cut into strips and wound into balls - ready to be woven.
Step 6. Using crochet needles, a Plantangle was slowly woven.
Step 7. The metallic ends were then clamped onto the Plantangle.
Step 8. The final product is inspected and love is added.
Step 9. Ready to gift and help keep our environment clean.

Thank you Plantastic for your awesome work towards protecting our precious sea life - you have our appreciation, and much love from Bob, Sandy and Yoshi.

Get your own Plantangle here (and help us protect sea turtles).

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