WATCH: Brevard Zoo Releases Record 374-Pound Green Sea Turtle at Lori Wilson Park After Quick Rehab
By Space Coast Daily // August 2, 2023
Jolene was rehabilitated after found with a commercial fishing line wrapped around her neck and front flippers
ABOVE VIDEO: Jolene, a 374-pound adult green sea turtle, went home to the ocean on Friday, July 28 at Lori Wilson Park in Cocoa Beach during a private release.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Brevard Zoo recently said goodbye to one of the largest green sea turtles they’ve ever rehabilitated.
Jolene, a 374-pound adult green sea turtle, went home to the ocean on Friday, July 28 at Lori Wilson Park in Cocoa Beach during a private release.
Jolene came to the Healing Center on July 7 after being found with a commercial fishing line wrapped around her neck and front flippers. She was transported from the Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge to Brevard Zoo Healing Center by the Sea Turtle Preservation Society.
Upon arrival, Jolene’s significant cuts under her left flipper and around her neck were cleaned, and a medical-grade fish skin graft was initially placed over some of the left flipper cuts to promote healing.
In her two weeks of care from us, Jolene recovered well with medication, rest and good nutrition.
The wellbeing of our sea turtle patients is always our priority, and Jolene made it clear she was ready to return to the ocean.
The wellbeing of sea turtle patients is always the Zoo’s priority, and Jolene made it very clear she was ready to go home.
“Our Healing Center team made the decision to release her privately, but you can watch some of her return back to the ocean,” said a Brevard Zoo spokesperson.
“When she arrived at our Healing Center, Jolene was found to be gravid or carrying eggs. She laid about 80 eggs, which were given to the University of Central Florida Marine Turtle Research Group (UCF MTRG) to be placed in a hand-dug chamber on the beach and monitored for development. We don’t know whether those eggs will hatch, but we’re hopeful”
Fishing gear can be very harmful to marine life, especially turtles. Please remember to pack your fishing gear before and after use, and place unwanted fishing line in the designated bins at waterfront parks. If you find a turtle with line wrapped around them, our Healing Center staff advise that you don’t remove the line (or any other item attached to a distressed sea turtle) unless it is impeding their ability to breathe.
If you find a sea turtle that appears to be in distress, contact Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 888-404-3922.
You can also call the Sea Turtle Preservation Society at 321-206-0646 for strandings in Brevard County.