The Turtle Hospital. Rescue, Rehab, Release.

The Heavy Weights Brigade

Green sea turtles Mickey and Sekoi and our one resident Kemp’s Ridley, Bender, gained some weight in the past weeks, but not from overeating!  Turtle Hospital staff went through the timely trial-and-error process to determine how much weight was needed to offset the residual buoyancy issues in these turtles caused by boat strikes.  Air often gets trapped under a sea turtle’s shell upon impact of a blunt force, and, unfortunately, this air results in the turtle floating permanently.  Deemed non-releaseable, the Turtle Hospital has developed a weight system that allows these turtles to dive down during their lives in captivity.  While Mickey, Sekoi and Bender were ready to have weights glued directly to their shells, some turtles are fitted with a temporary weight belt during the shell healing process while we wait for the keratin to strengthen (see below the recent post on O.D.).

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