IMMS sea turtle release in Pass Christian

The Institute for Marine Mammal Studies released eight Kemp’s ridley sea turtles into the Mississippi Sound on Saturday.

Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are the most endangered, but they are the most frequently seen here on the Coast. The recovery rate of these turtles varied, some were at IMMS for a month and some for a year.

Many community members came out to witness this release. For IMMS, this is the ultimate goal release.  Anytime they get to do a release is a successful day.  IMMS behavioral ecologist Dr. Mystera Samuelson said, “We pull these animals off of the piers and we spend months rehabbing them and feeding them and giving them all of their medical care. To actually see them survive and go back to the wild is fantastic.”

Spectator Marcella Hoffman said, “I’ve never been to a turtle release and I’ve never really actually seen a sea turtle before. So, this was exciting.”

If you accidentally hook a sea turtle the IMMS says do not unhook and release them.  Put the turtle in a safe place and call their hotline at 1-888-SOS-DOLPHIN.

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