Clearwater Marine Aquarium released Pico de Gallo, Jelly Bean, Enchilada, Lucky 31 and Soldier during one week in June!
Pico de Gallo’s Story
Pico is a juvenile, Kemp’s ridley from the Cedar Key area who was accidentally caught by a fisherman and ingested a fish hook on May 21, 2022. The fishing line was taped to the carapace (shell) to prevent further ingestion of the hook. The hook was successfully removed orally without the need for surgery by our staff veterinarian!
Pico was able to make a quick recovery and was cleared for release by our veterinarian and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission! Pico was released at Cedar Key on June 17, 2022.
Jelly Bean’s Story
Jelly Bean is a large juvenile, almost a sub-adult, green sea turtle who was found floating near Honeymoon Island on April 17, 2022. It was reported that Jelly Bean had difficulty staying submerged. There is also an old, healed injury to Jelly Bean’s caudal carapace. Diagnostics indicated that Jelly Bean had a lot of gastrointestinal gas which likely caused her buoyancy.
After a period of medications and a healthy diet, Jelly Bean’s buoyancy soon resolved, and she started resting on the bottom consistently, showing no buoyancy issues, and was cleared for release by our veterinarian and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission! Jelly Bean was released on June 22, 2022, at Honeymoon Island.
Enchilada, a juvenile, green sea turtle, was found washed ashore in Flagler County on February 28, 2022, and was taken to Whitney Laboratory. Enchilada was transferred to CMA on March 2, 2022, from Volusia County Marine Science Center to provide space for more local strandings. Enchilada was very debilitated at intake examination.
After completing a plan of antibiotics and a healthy diet, Enchilada now looks like a new turtle after spending several months in rehab at CMA and was cleared for release by our veterinarian and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission! Enchilada was released on June 23, 2022, on the East Coast of Florida.
Lucky 31 & Soldier’s Stories
Lucky 31 and Soldier are juvenile, green sea turtles who were transferred to CMA from Brevard Zoo in March to help provide space due to an increase in local strandings.
Lucky 31 was found washed ashore in Brevard County on February 24, 2022. Lucky had fibropapilloma tumors (pap tumors) on both eyes and several tumors on other areas of his body. All of his tumors were successfully removed during Lucky’s rehab at CMA. Lucky’s surgical sites have now healed!
Soldier was found entangled in a fishing line near Daytona on March 2, 2022. While at Brevard Zoo, Soldier successfully had all pap tumors removed. Soldier’s surgical sites have now healed!
Lucky 31 and Soldier are now healthy and have been cleared for release by our veterinarian and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. They were also released on June 23, 2022, on the East Coast of Florida!
We wish them all the best as they make their way back home!
All marine turtle footage taken in Florida was obtained with the approval of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) under conditions not harmful to marine turtles. Footage was acquired while conducting authorized conservation activities pursuant to FWC MTP-21/22-172A.