Kemp’s Ridley (Lepidochelys kempii)
Stranding Location: Edisto Beach, SC Arrival Date: July 25, 2016 Age: Juvenile Weight: ~2.2 lbs.
This young Kemp’s ridley was caught hook and line by a tourist on Edisto Beach. Thankfully, rather than throwing the injured turtle back with hook and line intact, this thoughtful tourist transported the animal to Edisto Island Serpentarium. The Serpentarium contacted the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and this little turtle traveled to our Sea Turtle Hospital. It truly does take an army!
We found not just one, but two hooks lodged in “Serp’s” esophagus. Medical attention, specifically endoscopic surgery, was required to safely remove the hooks from this turtle’s esophagus. The procedure went smoothly and Serp was given supportive care during recovery.
July 30, 2016: Serp is currently being fasted for two weeks, in order to give the esophagus time to heal. In the meantime s/he is receiving IV nutrition, and weight is being monitored closely. Staff is hopeful that this young turtle will make a full recovery. August 17, 2016: Serp’s incision site is healing up nicely. We have started to reintroduce food, and Serp is eating like a champ! A full recovery is expected. September 13, 2016: Serp’s incision site is taking some time to completely heal up. Serp now has a tank mate, a fellow Kemp’s Ridley, Oyster. Though the tank is partitioned, this tank has quickly become a guest favorite, as they can now see a double dose of cuteness! We are hoping that the incision site will finish healing up soon so Serp can return to his/her ocean home! September 30, 2016: This spunky turtle has quite the voracious appetite for such a small guy. He’ll usually catch the pieces of food before it evens hits the bottom of the tank! Since Serp came in a little underweight at last weight-in, we are hoping that a nice diet at 5% of his/her body weight will help get this Kemp’s ridley ready for release!
October 14, 2016
Folly Beach County Park