Sea Turtle Preservation Society Assists In Distress Calls

By  //  February 12, 2013

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Group Responds To Three Rescues

BREVARD COUNTY • INDIALANTIC, FLORIDA – Last Sunday, volunteers with the Sea Turtle Preservation Society responded to three calls involving live sea turtles that were in distress from illness or injury.

The first call came into our emergency number at 8:25 a.m. regarding a turtle in distress at Sea Gull Park in Satellite Beach. Kat Parks, a member of our stranding and salvage team, responded to the call. The turtle turned out to be a Green that was suffering from a tumor causing condition called Fibropapilloma. It was transported to our store located in Indialantic to await transportation to a rehab facility.

Another call came in at 9:12 a.m. regarding an injured turtle in front of the Hilton Hotel in Indialantic. Standing and salvage team members Pat Rush and Debby Livingston responded to this injured Kemps Ridley turtle.

Kemps Ridley turtles are not usually found in this part of the state, but could have been pushed up from the south because of strong winds. It too was taken to our store.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) was contacted. FWC is responsible for contacting rehab facilities that can take care of injured and ill sea turtles. Because one of the turtles had Fibropapilloma there are only a few facilities in Florida that will take them.

Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles are the rarest of all sea turtles and a critically endangered species. (Shutterstock image)

The closest one was Gumbo Limo in Palm Beach County. A request went out to the society membership for a driver to make this 5-plus hour round trip.

Before noon both turtles were on their way to rehab, but unfortunately the Green turtle died in transit.

The day was not over for our volunteers. Paul and Anne Lins. Another call about another Kemps Ridley had them responding to the Seashell Suites Resort in Melbourne Beach.

The Lins are volunteers with the Barrier Island Center.

The turtle had been off shore for most of the day and finally beached itself at around 5:30 pm. The Lins called the STPS emergency number and were instructed to take the turtle to the store where they were met by Pat Rush.

By this time it was too late to transport and the turtle was transported to Volusia County. The society nicknamed the turtle Valentine.

The Sea Turtle Preservation Society in Brevard County reaches thousands of people each year through public presentations, exhibits at area events and by turtle watches during the sea turtle nesting season.

The society’s goal is to help maintain the current sea turtle population and to prevent a potentially irreversible decline in that population.

The Sea Turtle Preservation Society’s emergency number is 321-206-0646.   


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