Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sea Turtle Beach Release Saturday, August 28th at Folly Beach County Park!

In partnership with the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission and the SC Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), the South Carolina Aquarium will release 2 rehabilitated sea turtles at the Folly Beach County Park on Saturday, August 28 at 4pm. County Park parking fees apply.

The 100-pound loggerhead, Santos, was cold-stunned off the New England coast in the winter of ‘08 and treated for a year at the Marine Animal Rehabilitation Center at the University of New England. In November of ‘09, the turtle was transported to the South Carolina Aquarium to finish healing, catching a ride in a small Piper Twin Comanche with private pilot, Ronnie Santos from Mount Pleasant, SC. We are grateful for Ronnie and the East Cooper Pilot’s Association for this wonderful support!

The juvenile Kemp’s ridley, Surfer, was caught on hook and line just 4 months ago by a surf fisherman on Hilton Head, SC. Kemp’s ridleys are commonly found in near shore waters in the summertime and are prone to getting caught by recreational fishermen. Surfer underwent surgery to remove the hook that was deeply embedded in the esophagus. A hook that is left in the esophagus of a turtle in the wild can be problematic, possibly resulting in death and we congratulate all fishermen who turn these “hooked” endangered species over to the SCDNR.
Sea turtle releases often draw large crowds so it is strongly advised that if you are attending, plan for heavy traffic onto Folly Beach and especially out to the County Park. Carpool if possible, as parking may be limited. We look forward to seeing you there!