Hunley | South Carolina Aquarium


Jul 12


Loggerhead (Caretta caretta)

Stranding Location: Charleston Harbor

Arrival Date:July 1, 2016

Age: Adult

Weight:~140 pounds

Case Historyhunley 2

Just like our recent admission Sumter, this loggerhead was found during a routine research trawling by South Carolina Department of Natural Resources. Scientists on the boat noticed immediately that this turtle had sustained some severe injuries to its plastron, carapace, and flippers. After sending pictures to Sea Turtle Hospital staff it was concluded that this turtle was in need of treatment at the Sea Turtle Hospital.


It was clear to hospital staff that “Hunley” was in need of immediate attention. This loggerhead looked like she had survived not just a shark attack, but multiple boat propeller strikes, too.  After a full work-up, staff discovered  lacerations on the carapace and plastron, a deep cut on the head, and a serious bite wound on the right front flipper. Hunley was given pain medication, antibiotics, fluids, and vitamins before staff moved her to the hospital where she will continue to be closely monitored.


10 July 2016: Hunley is doing well and the wounds are slowly starting to heal. Staff has been fairly hands-off in regards to treatment of the wounds, allowing the wounds to heal on their own in a nice clean 1,000 gallon tank of filtered saltwater. The turtle is receiving antibiotic injections every three days. Later this month, Hunley will have another physical examination, including radiographs, to monitor the healing process. In the meantime, she is enjoying her daily diet of fish!


August 1, 2016: Hunley’s shark attack wounds are healing very well. This patient was recently brought up to the med lab for radiographs to determine if she had swallowed any fishing hooks. Luckily, no hooks were present and this turtle is on track for release.

August 10, 2016: Hunley’s shark attack wounds continue to improve and are healing nicely! Hunley is still on track for release in the next few months!

September 13, 2016: Hunley is doing great and is currently eating 2.5% if her body weight. After being thoroughly examined by Dr. Shane Boylan last week, we are happy to report that Hunley has been medically cleared for release!

Release Date

September 22, 2016

Release Location

Isle of Palms County Park

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