- Patient Status
- Date Found
- January 17, 2024
- Indian Rocks Beach; Pinellas County
- Reason for Rescue
- 35.24 kg (77.5 lbs)
- SCL (Straight Carapace Length)
- 63.6 cm
- Exam Findings
- Robust body condition, moderate load of epibiota on caudal carapace, and a healed injury to carapace
- Initial Treatment
- Fluids, antibiotics, and vitamins
Pumpernickel is a subadult green sea turtle who was found floating near Indian Rocks on Jan. 17. It was reported that they had trouble staying submerged. Pumpernickel does have a previous injury to their caudal carapace (shell) that is completely healed. They had a large amount of epibiota (algae and barnacles) just on this portion of their carapace which tells us they have been buoyant for some time. Over the next few weeks, we will be performing diagnostics to better assess the cause of their buoyancy.
INTERESTING FACT: Naming theme: Bread
Radiographs performed on Pumpernickel do show some gastrointestinal abnormalities that could be the cause of their buoyancy. We are unsure of the severity of these findings at this time. We will be monitoring for defecations.
Pumpernickel is able to be in water all day and overnight in one of our shallow ICU pools. They are still showing buoyancy issues with difficulty staying submerged. We are continuing to do glucose checks and giving fluids as needed.
Pumpernickel’s CT showed injuries to their spine and potentially concerning gastrointestinal issues. We will start offering food and monitoring for defecations.
Pumpernickel has been defecating over the last several days and is eating most of their diet. We will recheck radiographs next week to see if there was any improvement.
Pumpernickel was approved to move to a bigger, deeper pool after radiographs showed improvement. Pumpernickel is able to eat off the bottom in this deeper pool and rest on the bottom, caudal end up!
Pumpernickel has been resting on the bottom for the last week and is continuing to do well.
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-23/24-172.