Lil’ Nugget

Lil’ Nugget

Species: Green Sea Turtle
(Chelonia mydas)

Arrival Date
: October 21, 2014
Stranding Location: Singer Island, Florida

Initial Weight
: 4.75 lbs.
Current Weight: 3.8 lbs.

Issue: Motorboat Injury
Current Condition: Improving



Lil Nugget is a juvenile green that was hit by a boat.  It has damage on the carapace and head.  Fortunately, the spine and lungs were not damaged.  VAC therapy is being used on the carapace and the head injury is being closely monitored. The turtle is receiving antibiotics and fluids.


12/15/2014 – Lil’ Nugget started taking a turn for the worst from the head wound and exhibiting strange behavior. He was taken to a veterinary ophthalmologist where it was determined he was completely blind. Its health continued to get worse and after a few days the turtle was humanly euthanized.

12/8/2014 – VAC therapy has been discontinued and the turtle has been placed outside in the water full-time.  Tube feeding continues as the turtle still has not shown any interest in food.

12/1/2014 – Tube feedings are causing the turtle to gain weight.  Turtle is stronger and swims more in the water than before.

11/24/2014 – Tube feedings are done three times daily. The volume of gruel has been increased as the turtle is now able to handle more food. Lil’ Nugget seems to have more energy and is very active while handling. Lil’ Nugget is able to spend more time in the water and dry docked only for tube feeds and at night.

11/18/2014 – On November 04, 2014 Lil’ Nugget passed a blue balloon. Lil’ Nugget has yet to start eating on its own. An esophagostomy tube (feeding tube) has been placed in the esophagus in order to start getting nutrition into the turtle. The turtle is being monitored closely and continues to receive antibiotics and fluids as prescribed.


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