Mississippi Aquarium releases sea turtles back into the Gulf
After several months of rehabilitation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, the Mississippi Aquarium has finally released its last sea turtles that were cold stunned due to cold waters in the northeast and brought to the Coast for treatment.
Twenty-five Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtles were flown to Gulfport in December and were immediately taken to the Aquarium’s veterinary lab where staff completed initial tests and exams.
The turtles were taken to an off-site facility where they were treated for complications from their extended exposure to cold water.
Some of the complications included respiratory and bone issues, a weakened immune system, and problems with their G.I. tracts.
Today, the last seven of the recovered cold-stunned turtles returned to their natural habitat: the Gulf of Mexico. Director of Research at the Mississippi Aquarium Dr. Holley Muraco said, “It has just been a privilege. This is a part of our mission: conservation, education, and community. And this is exactly why we do what we do, saving these endangered sea turtles.”
Mississippi Aquarium CEO Kurt Allen said, “We’ll continue to do this. Unfortunately, this happens almost every year, so now that we’re set up and ready to go, we can help on a nationwide level because there’s a need across the country for facilities like ours that can handle this.”
To learn about more ways the Mississippi Aquarium is helping to promote the conservation of species native to Mississippi’s aquatic resources stop by the aquarium between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.