Permanent Residents

Sea turtles that are deemed non-releasable by the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) are called “permanent residents.” Five of our permanent residents are going to live out the rest of their lives here at The Turtle Hospital while the other 6 are up for adoption to AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums around the world.

The following 5 sea turtles will stay at The Turtle Hospital for the remainder of their lives and can be ‘adopted’, click here to learn about our adoption program.

bubblebuttBubble Butt: adult male Green. Boat hit caused the “bubble butt syndrome” for which he was named. Stranded on 3/23/1989.

 

 

 

 

 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABender: adult female Kemp’s Ridley. Boat hit and lobster trap entanglement resulting in loss of left front flipper.  Weights help to swim better. Stranded on 2/17/05.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARebel: 230-lb adult Loggerhead. Boat strike, paralysis in rear flippers and tail. Weights attached to rear end of carapace offset buoyancy from boat hit. Stranded on 8/10/1991.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAApril: 200-lb adult male Green. Fibropapilloma took over right eye which had to be removed.  Left eye has shadow vision. (Blind sea turtles cannot survive in the wild as they rely heavily on sight.) Stranded on 4/1/1990.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMontel: Green. The sea turtle “poster child.” Monofilament entanglement resulting in amputation of right front flipper. Shark attack bit off half of left front flipper leaving only half a front flipper remaining. Fibropapilloma and boat hit resulting in loss of one eye and indented shell. Stranded on 4/7/2001.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The rest of our permanent residents are up for adoption to zoos/aquariums around the world:

 

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERASekoi: 30-lb Green. Fibropapilloma caused loss of one eye and boat hit resulted in permanent floating.  Weights on the rear of the shell helps to offset the buoyancy. Stranded 2/21/2007.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMickey: Green. Boat strike resulting in rear flipper paralysis.  Two weights on the rear of the carapace offset the buoyancy. Stranded 3/1/2009.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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In water 3.31.13Kent: Green. Fibropapilloma tumors removed, boat strike causes floating. Weight system offsets buoyancy. Stranded 9/19/2007.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Coastie 02.13.12Coastie: Green. Boat strike causes floating. Small circular weight on rear of shell offsets buoyancy. Stranded 11/2/1999.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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George: Female juvenile Green. Treated for FP tumors and boat hit which causes George to permanently float. Attached weight offsets buoyancy. Stranded 2/17/11 in New Smyrna Beach, FL.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABernie: 13-lb Juvenile Green. Injury to rear of carapace, likely from washing against rocky shoreline. Arrived 4/23/13 from Sea World. Found in Brevard County, FL. Originally stranded 3/6/2011 in Brevard County, FL.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Chance: 70 lb. Green. Boat hit caused deformation of shell and a small fracture. Stranded on 9/29/13 offshore of Key Largo, FL. Weights are attached to shell to offset buoyancy and allow Chance to dive below the surface.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sapphire:  Subadult female Loggerhead.  Found floating off Lower Matecumbe Key on 5/13/13.  Old propeller wound to rear end of carapace.  Previous patient at the Turtle Hospital in February 2010.

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Tink: Juvenile Green. Originally found in Indian River, FL on 5/15/14. Treated at Sea World and Mote Marine Laboratory before transfer to The Turtle Hospital on 5/2/14. Carapace injury resulted in “Bubble Butt Syndrome” and is non-releasable, wears weights to offset buoyancy.

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Want a sea turtle in your hometown zoo/aquarium? Send a letter to the organization referencing The Turtle Hospital’s permanent residents and emphasizing how acquiring a sea turtle can further the zoological mission of education and conservation.  If there is a public desire for one of these amazing endangered animals, then your zoo will do its best to please you!  We even send them internationally, like Weymouth Sea Life Adventure Park in the United Kingdom!  Check out Key West Aquarium or Theater of the Sea  for some of our past permanent residents as well.