Release Scheduled for 12 p.m. on January 26, 2012
14200 US Highway One – Juno Beach, FL 33408
“Checkers,” a 23.98-pound juvenile green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), was admitted to the Gordon & Patricia Gray Veterinary Hospital on October 8, 2011 after stranding in Jupiter’s Carlin Park. The public is invited to attend Checkers’ release on Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 12 p.m. on the beach adjacent to Loggerhead Marinelife Center. Pre-release procedures will begin at 11:30 a.m. The upcoming release is an opportunity to say farewell to the sea turtle as it heads home after a successful 110-day rehabilitation.
When Checkers arrived to Loggerhead Marinelife Center, the turtle was weak, anemic, slightly underweight and buoyant. The staff veterinarian also noted an old, completely healed wound on the rear portion of its carapace that may have resulted from a boat propeller injury. Radiographs revealed a large amount of gas in its digestive tract. The rehabilitation team offered Checkers small amounts of food to stimulate its digestive tract. As the turtle became sufficiently hydrated and its digestive health improved, the gas resolved. Checkers also received calcium gluconate, iron, and antibiotics to improve its blood work.
Green sea turtles like Checkers are endangered. In the past decade, green turtle nest numbers have risen greatly along local beaches. In 2011, there were 1,904 green sea turtle nests along 9.8 miles of shore in Juno Beach, Jupiter and Tequesta. The green turtle is named for the greenish color of its body fat. Green turtles can weigh up to 400 pounds.
More than 100 people “adopted” Checkers during the turtle’s rehabilitation. Your continued support of Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s life-saving rehabilitation program is appreciated. Maria, Melba, Kahuna, Zoe, and Hatchlings are currently available for adoption. “Sea” you Thursday!