Six sea turtles, five of which being amongst the most endangered species of sea turtles in the world, were released back into the sea off the coast of South Carolina on Thursday.
The South Carolina Aquarium released the turtles after a successful rehabilitation stint at the aquarium’s Sea Turtle Hospital, according to a report on the SFGate which also indicated that the release included a green turtle as well as five Kemp’s ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii); the latter of which are not only critically endangered, they’re also the rarest sea turtles in the world.
According to National Geographic, the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, also known as the Atlantic ridley sea turtle, has a roughly estimated worldwide female nesting population of just 1,000 turtles.
Aside from being the world’s most endangered sea turtle, it’s also among the smallest of the sea turtles, reaching lengths of about 2 feet and weights as high as 100 pounds. Length measurements are taken in regards to the total length of the turtle’s shell.
The green sea turtle, while not as rare as the Atlantic ridley, is also on the list of endangered species of sea turtles. Named for the color of their skin, green sea turtles are one of the largest species of sea turtles in the world, measuring up to 5 feet and weighing as much as 700 pounds
The turtles were sent to the Sea Turtle hospital for a variety of issues, including hypothermia and buoyancy problems, according to a report on Live 5 WCSC.
According to reports, the six recently released turtles were named Bailey, Tater, Gibbons, Pilatus, Fitz and Cavin. The group of rehabilitated turtles were released into the Atlantic Ocean, on the Isle of Palms. The release marks the South Carolina Aquarium’s first public release of turtles this season.
This most recent release accounted for, 163 threatened and endangered sea turtles have been treated at and released from the aquarium since its opening just 15 years ago.
Last year, 2,080 turtle nests were found across the state of South Carolina.
In other sea turtle news here at Immortal News, a recent study indicates juvenile sea turtles don’t just drift, but actually swim in particular directions.