The Sea Turtle Healing Center cares for sick or injured sea turtles found primarily along the nearby Florida coast. While this facility is not open to the public, the effects of its work impact local sea turtle populations. An in-county facility means a shorter drive for patients, resulting in less stress and quicker treatment for distressed turtles.
Date admitted: February 16, 2022
Stranding location: Melbourne Beach
Admission notes: Nebula is a small juvenile green that stranded in Melbourne Beach on February 16. This little turtle presented with a laceration under its front right flipper and was also missing the majority of its rear left flipper, but that was fully healed before stranding. They were dehydrated and a little thin but pretty active once they arrived at the STHC. Unfortunately, a couple of hours after intake they started to crash, and emergency procedures were needed. They were given medications to stabilize their quickly dropping heart rate and were intubated so we could breathe for them. We were able to bring up the heart rate, but we were having a harder time regulating their breathing. Eventually, Nebula was stable enough to be extubated and made it through the first night. They were a little stronger the next day and we were able to put them in a shallow pool. Once offered food, this little turtle started eating right away! We have had difficulty keeping the flipper laceration from bleeding, warranting daily bandage changes and evaluations.
March 24, 2022: After a few days of care, Nebula’s flipper had started to swell and tissues began to die, making this turtle become septic. Staff removed the necrotic tissue successfully, but Nebula started to crash shortly after. Staff attempted to resuscitate but were unsuccessful. A necropsy revealed that this sea turtle was very sick and had been for a while.
Have you found a sea turtle that needs help? Visit this page or call the Sea Turtle Preservation Society at 321-206-0646.