Monday, April 19, 2010

1st live SC stranding admitted into Sea Turtle Hospital

Juvenile Kemp's ridleys are famous for taking bait of recreational hook and line fishermen and swallowing the hooks. These hooks can be detrimental to the lives of these animals and we encourage fishermen to turn the turtle over to SCDNR if they are unable to remove the hook safely.

This is just the case with the first live stranding in South Carolina. A 5-pound Kemp's ridley was caught in the surf on Hilton Head, SC and was transported by SCDNR officials Sunday night. The small turtle named "Surfer" is somewhat lethargic and thin. These signs in addition to skin lesions across the neck and shoulders indicate the turtle may have been suffering from an infection prior to getting hooked.
Radiographs were performed Monday morning to see the type and depth of the hook in the esophagus and hook removal surgery soon followed with the turtle under full anesthesia. Surgery took approximately 50 minutes with Dr. Boylan at the helm. Hospital staff had to breathe for the animal for hours as he recovered from surgery and eventually Dr. Boylan took the turtle home with him to continue that breathing. Prognosis is guarded. Much more detail of the surgery and treatment can be found on the "Surfer's" individual case log on the Sea Turtle Hospital page.

Thanks all involved in the rescue of this endangered Kemp's ridley. We are doing everything possible to aid in it's recovery!

Kelly T