Stanley Goes Home
Stanley Goes Home
A tiny loggerhead sea turtle nicknamed “Stanley” was returned to the wild by caregivers from Mote Marine Laboratory Tuesday morning, July 3, from a boat seven miles offshore of Sarasota.The 15-ounce turtle with a 5-inch upper shell was released into floating seaweed called Sargassum, where sea turtles this size normally rest and feed. Stanley’s offshore release was possible thanks to boat transportation donated by Marine Max. This release is a happy ending to an unusual story: Stanley appears to be a hatchling from 2011 and is the first-ever patient to arrive at Mote’s Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Hospital during this stage of life. Loggerhead sea turtles Stanley’s size normally stay miles offshore; how Stanley remained behind is unknown. Stanley was brought to Mote on March 20 by staff from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). FWC staff retrieved the turtle from a member of the public who said they rescued it from a canal in Marco Island. Stanley arrived at Mote with abscesses on its body and around its eyes, which were closed. Mote staff gave Stanley food and antibiotics, cleaned the abscesses and monitored them carefully to ensure they were healing. The turtle began eating on its own within days and it showed a healthy appetite and good energy throughout its stay. While at Mote, Stanley’s weight tripled and its upper shell grew 1.5 inches — signs of health in this young turtle with lots of growing left to do. Adult loggerheads typically weight more than 200 pounds.
- You can help Mote’s Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Hospital take care of patients great and small by making a donation atwww.mote.org/hospitalhelp.
- Protecting sea turtles is important year ‘round — especially during sea turtle nesting season, which runs through Oct. 31.