Photos from Turtle Rescue Season: Before a Transport

The Rescue Team will be posting details about the transports and treatments at the Animal Care Center in the days and weeks ahead. In the meantime, we'll be sharing pictures and video of the activity at the sea turtle hospital so you can have a feel for the action during this incredibly busy year—more than 150 live turtles treated so far, and still counting!

With more than 150 rescued sea turtles passing through the Animal Care Center, our facility in Quincy is bursting at the seams. Fortunately, we have a great network of partners up and down the East Coast who can help us rehabilitate all these patients. But before any animal is shipped out to its rehabilitation home, it needs one final bout of TLC from our team.

A Rescue volunteer gently removes a Kemp's ridley sea turtle from its pool in preparation for transport.

One last turtle exam before the turtles ship out: A rescue staff and veterinary staff make sure each turtle is healthy enough to travel and administer any medicines or fluids required prior to transport.

All information about a turtle's exams are logged in a medical record that follows the turtle to its ultimate rehab facility. Each turtle has a specialized medical plan tailored to that particular animal's needs. The photo above shows the blood sampling and radiograph (X-Ray) schedule for one week. 

During large events like this one, turtles are often transported in banana boxes. It's helpful because the boxes come free from local grocery stores, they are roomy enough for the smaller patients that usually strand in large numbers.

We weren't kidding about those banana boxes!  These of course do not have turtles in them in this photo.  At the bottom of the photo you can see our standard gray sea turtle transport boxes.  We are nearly out of those at this point!

As is the case with this small group of turtles that went to the National Aquarium in Baltimore, once stable, many turtles  from the Aquarium's Animal Care Center are driven or flown to rehabilitation facilities up and down the East Coast.

Many thanks to the people and institutions helping out during this extremely busy stretch—from our partners at Mass Audubon at Wellfleet Bay searching for stranded turtles to our all our rescue partners to generous donors helping to shuttle turtles all over the country to the dozens of volunteers closer to home feeding turtles and doing laundry.

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