At just over 70 lbs, juvenile loggerhead “Doc” checked in for rehab on April 20. Doc was found floating off Sombrero Beach by part-time Marathoners and Wisconsin natives Tim & Barb Heitman and Becky Galvan. Mr. Heitman practices medicine, which inspired Doc’s name. Having participated in one of our education programs a few weeks prior, the trio could tell this turtle was in distress, and they knew just who to call! Needing a boat for pick-up, Florida National Marine Sanctuary and FWC provided Doc’s transportation, performing the at-sea rescue. Upon arrival at our little marina, Doc was taken into the Emergency Room for a full body examination, including X-rays. In addition to being unable to dive, the turtle has abscesses under the throat region as well as a tear in the lower jaw, presumably from a fish hook being ripped out. The turtle is also experiencing “lock jaw” and will likely undergo physical therapy to get the mouth muscles working again. A special thanks goes out to Doc’s rescuers! Now we can be sure that this sea turtle gets all the medical attention needed for a quick and full recovery!
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