Two months ago, "Pirate" was just beginning to open his mouth a few centimeters and starting to feed on his own after being tube fed for 7 months. In fact, the video blog post on March 15th shows "Pirate" taking 2 minutes to eat just 1 small piece of fish. In the newest video below, "Pirate" is able to consume almost a pound of cut fish in 2 minutes!
Once "Pirate" started showing good progress with eating fish, we decided to try live blue crabs, a natural prey item for loggerheads in the wild and an important form of enrichment for the patients in our hospital. In the next video, you can see that "Pirate" wastes no time going after the crab but it takes several attempts to actually get the whole crab into his mouth. Regardless, the end result is that the crab gets consumed.
Range of motion in "Pirate's" jaw is still only a fraction of what it should be but we are on the road to recovery!