Date admitted: June 30, 2019
Stranding location: Sebastian Inlet State Park
Status: In treatment
Admission notes: This juvenile green sea turtle came to us from Sebastian Inlet State Park on June 30. Ceres—who was named after the asteroid for International Asteroid Day—came to us with a small depressed head wound and a swollen right eye.
October 7, 2019: Ceres had an elevated white blood cell count at her most recent blood work. This turtle received a CT scan on Wednesday to check the healing of their skull fracture and get a better look at the lungs. Our veterinary staff plans to do an endoscopic procedure in the coelomic cavity in order to better pinpoint the cause of Ceres listing in the water.
September 26, 2019: Over their time here, Ceres has gained a lot of weight. So much so, that we were worried it was edema, which we have seen in turtles with head injuries. A quick examination from vet staff has concluded that Ceres is actually just a little chunky, and for a turtle who used to not be able to eat on their own, that’s an OK thing for now!
September 12, 2019: This turtle has a new goal: start diving more. Ceres is still really buoyant, but we would like to see some attempts in getting down slightly to eat, so we have clipped their lettuce deeper in the pool to entice them to dive!
August 23, 2019: This turtle is such a resilient little thing. They have some attitude now as well. We are starting to find that Ceres prefers bell peppers and dandelion greens over romaine and zucchini. We are also seeing some improvement in vision and response out of the left eye. Now, we are just waiting for changes in their buoyancy. To watch this, we have placed a line on Ceres’ shell to monitor how much they are listing each day.
August 15, 2019: Ceres started eating on their own! While a little stiff in the neck still, this turtle will willingly grab and eat food while being tong-fed and even looks for lettuce around their pool. We are awaiting some changes with Ceres’ lungs, however. Their left lung is still severely smaller than the right.
August 1, 2019: This turtle tolerates physical therapy very well, and the range of motion of their neck is significantly better. Ceres has also been placement feeding better, and they will actually spit out food items they do not like. So far, this turtle is not a fan of romaine.
July 26, 2019: Ceres is still not eating on their own, but is eating when placement fed. This turtle is receiving cold laser therapy and physical therapy every day.
July 18, 2019: Ceres is doing well despite their injuries. We have been placement feeding this turtle daily and they have been accepting the food with minimal to no objection. We have discovered, though, that Ceres prefers dandelion greens to lettuce! We are also performing physical therapy stretches on their strained neck along with daily laser therapy.
July 15, 2019: Ceres received a CT scan on July 9. Results showed a fracture to their skull but no hemorrhaging. This turtle is showing some improvement and we are continuing to monitor their eating habits.
July 5, 2019: Radiographs show skull fractures on this turtle, but the extent of the damage will be better seen with a CT scan. We are hoping to get this done next week.