MSC to release turtle with amputated flipper
After months of rehabilitation at the Marine Science Center turtle hospital, two juvenile green sea turtles will return to the sea. One of them is missing a front flipper, but has proven that it can swim and dive.
Staff plans to release the turtles at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 17, at the Beach Street Ramp in Ponce Inlet. The release, which is dependent on weather and surf conditions, will occur on the north side of the ramp in the no-driving zone. Paid beach parking is available on the south side of the ramp, tide permitting. Guests can also park at the Marine Science Center and walk to the beach.
Radar was discovered in New Smyrna Beach on Sept. 21 with a constriction wound caused by monofilament fishing line around the left front flipper. After trying to save the affected flipper, veterinarian Dr. Craig Pelton determined that the flipper was not viable and amputated it on Sept. 26. Treatment included antibiotics, vitamin injections, fluids with electrolytes and wound care. Radar, who weighed 6.4 pounds at intake and now weighs 8 pounds, swims well and is able to dive and find food.
Zodiac was discovered in Ormond Beach dehydrated and lethargic on Nov. 4. Zodiac was 4.8 pounds at the time of stranding and is now just over 5 pounds. The turtle’s treatment included fluid therapy, vitamin injections, antibiotics and dewormer.
The Marine Science Center is open to the public at 100 Lighthouse Drive, Ponce Inlet. Visitors may view the turtle hospital and walk through a marine display area and seabird rehabilitation center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. For information, visit www.marinesciencecenter.com or call 386-304-5545.