The Turtle Hospital. Rescue, Rehab, Release.

Sea Turtle Emergency

If you spot a sick or injured Sea Turtle in Florida, you should immediately contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-FWCC (*FWC or #FWC on your cell phone).

The Turtle Hospital may also be contacted in this event on our 24-hour stranding hotline at 305-481-7669.  This hotline is for sea turtle distress calls in the Florida Keys only and will put you in contact with a rehab specialist immediately.

You may also contact the Coast Guard (VHF channel 16).


Examples of a sea turtle that might need help include but are not limited to:

  • Listelessly floating on the surface
  • Struggling but unable to dive
  • Entanglement in fishing line, rope, netting or plastic material
  • Apparent damage from a boat hit
  • Washed up on the beach/shore, possibly very skinny or a small “wash back” hatchling
  • Tumor growth anywhere on the turtle. Commonly on flippers and eyes.

Sea turtles are endangered/threatened species and should not be touched or handled by anyone unless authorized by the FWC or The Turtle Hospital.