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Hundreds of Juvenile Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtles Stranded on Cape Cod

November 25, 2014



The Massachusetts Audobon Society and the New England Aquarium have been inundated in the last month with nearly 200 juvenile Kemp’s ridley (Lepidochelys kempii) sea turtles that became stranded on Cape Cod. 


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Kemp's ridley sea turtles

Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary photo via New England Aquarium

These juvenile Kemp's ridley sea turtles were found stranded off Cape Cod and have been sent to Florida for rehabilitation.

The turtles, cold and stunned from the cold have been picked up by volunteers and staff of the facilities and taken for treatment of hypothermia and other conditions. But because there have been so many strandings in less than one month’s time, the facilities have called in the U.S. Coast Guard, which sent an aircrew to fly 193 turtles to Florida where they will be rehabilitated. The turtles will be cared for at 10 facilities throughout the Sunshine State, but that hasn’t eased the efforts of the Audobon Society and the New England Aquarium. They are still caring for about 150 sea turtles that became stranded. These turtles will be warmed up and then flown to Florida by the U.S. Coast Guard. 

According to Cape Cod Today, the number of strandings are unprecedented, but there is a silver lining. That large number indicates that the hatchling rate over the course of the last two to five years indicates what is called ‘Good Survivorship” meaning that the Kemp’s ridley may be on a slow recovery.


John B. Virata keeps a ball python, two corn snakes, a king snake, and two leopard geckos. His first snake, a California kingsnake, was purchased at the Pet Place in Westminster, CA for $5. His first pet reptile was a green anole that arrived in a small box via mail order. Follow him on Twitter @johnvirata 

 

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