If you are boating or jet skiing, please be wary of floating animals.

Sea turtles need to gather their heat from the sun while the water temperatures are still low.

If you see a floating turtle, please steer clear of him and if you happen to hit them, please call the Clearwater Marine Aquarium stranding line at (727) 441-1790 x 234.

harveyboatstrikeThis winter has been a hard one for sea turtles in Florida waters. The effects of the cold stun event has been long lived and carried through many months. Some small turtles that survived the initial cold stun event, eventually succumbed to chronic health issues such as pneumonia, emaciation from floating and boat strikes. This seems to be the case with juvenile green sea turtles. When sea turtles become ill, they will sometimes begin to float from lethargy causing them lack of energy and immobility. Cold, lethargic and ill sea small green sea turtles make it difficult to near impossible to get out of harms way, whether it be predator or boat. When the weather began to warm up, the green sea turtles can “bask” at the surface of the water for small periods of time; warming themselves in the spring sun. Basking is a form of napping in these turtles and again, they are not ready to move quickly out of harms way as they are still dealing with possible illness and lethargy.

boatstrike

In the past month, CMA has seen 5 boat strike juvenile green sea turtles and Mote Marine Lab has admitted at least 4. These boat strikes can be fatal. They tear through skull, bone, scutes and soft tissue. If these turtles miraculously survive, they need to go through months of triage and wound care to make sure their wounds are kept incredibly clean and that the staff is keeping infection at the wound site and internally, at bay. We currently have 3 boat strike green sea turtles in the turtle rehabilitation area.

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If you are boating or jet skiing, please be wary of floating animals.

Sea turtles need to gather their heat from the sun while the water temperatures are still low.

If you see a floating turtle, please steer clear of him and if you happen to hit them, please call the Clearwater Marine Aquarium stranding line at (727) 441-1790 x 234.

*Please note the turtles in these pictures were alive at the time the picture was taken.


Posted in Turtles
CMA

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