Washed-up sea turtle on track for recovery

June 27, 2012 at 7:58 PM
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NEWPORT, Ore., June 27 (UPI) -- Officials at the Oregon Marine Mammal Stranding Network said a green sea turtle that washed ashore in Newport is on track to make a full recovery.

The 135-pound turtle was near death more than a week ago when a hotel guest walking along the beach stumbled upon him. Nadine Fuller said the animal was so still, she thought he had to be dead until she saw him blink an eye, The Oregonian reported Wednesday.

At that point, she alerted hotel workers, who contacted the stranding network to rescue the turtle.

Far from his native warm waters in the tropical Pacific Ocean, the turtle was "cold stunned" or hypothermic, said Jim Rice, coordinator of the stranding network.

"These animals will often appear dead when there is still some life left inside of them," he said.

"He's doing pretty well," Burke added. "We still need to get him stabilized. But he's behaving OK. He's right on track as far as the rehabilitation plan is concerned."

The turtle is receiving antibiotics and fluids intravenously and once stabilized will be moved to a rehabilitation center in a warmer climate.

"Most likely this animal will go to that area for feeding and observation," Burke said. "The goal would be to release it back to the wild, ideally later this summer."

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