Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Sea Turtle Release: PHOTO BLOG

The Aquarium's Sea Turtle Rescue Program staff have been so busy with several new patients that we haven't been able to post photos from the May 23rd release on the Isle of Palms! It was an amazing release and we are thankful for everyone that helped and that came out to see it. We are currently working on a mini-blog series about the new patients that will start towards the end of the week. We are also in the process of analyzing several sea turtles for release so we hope to be posting release information soon, as well. In the meantime, enjoy the May 23rd release photos!

This juvenile Kemp's ridley sea turtle was rescued near Bird Key off of Folly Beach, SC. S/he was badly entangled in monofilament fishing line and would not have fared well if a local fisherman had not come to the rescue! Read more about Birdie's admission here. Birdie was released by Sea Turtle Rescue Program volunteer/photographer, Barbara Bergwerf. 

Barney and McCann
These two juvenile green sea turtles were cold-stunned off of the New England coast in late November and were of the 18 cold-stuns admitted into the Aquarium's Sea Turtle Hospital this past winter. If these beautiful little sea turtles grow to full size, they could be over 300 pounds! Volunteers Bev Ballow and Sherry Fox released these little guys.

Dr. Boyland and I released Mantgeo, one of three loggerheads to be admitted from the North Carolina cold-stun season this winter. Although it took some time for Manteo to begin eating and behaving normally after the illness, s/he is one feisty turtle now! 

This juvenile loggerhead was flown in by private pilot Michael Taylor in January of 2013 and was one of the later cold stunned sea turtles from New England. Released by volunteer Jackie Huffman and spring intern Joni Vaughn, Taylor wasted no time getting to the water!

Huge thanks to everyone who helped with the rescue, transport, rehabilitation and release of these 5 sea turtles. This release brings the South Carolina Aquarium to 112 sea turtles releases to date.  The hospital webpage has a full listing of all patients in our Sea Turtle Hospital as well as those released. Periodic updates are posted to these pages so you can follow the rehabilitation of them all!

All the best,
Kelly Thorvalson
Sea Turtle Rescue Program Manager