Saturn | South Carolina Aquarium


Jan 04


Green (Chelonia mydas)

Stranding Location: Buzzards Bay, MA
Arrival Date: 11/27/22
Age: Juvenile
Weight: 3.7 kg (8.14 lbs)

Case History

This turtle is one of many that stranded up in the New England area due to cold stunning, the sea turtle equivalent of hypothermia. New England Aquarium admits hundreds of turtles during the colder winter months; this year, we were able to take in 15 of these turtles to help lighten their load. We coordinate with New England Aquarium and a non-profit called Turtles Fly Too to transport the turtles here. Many thanks to pilot Steve Bernstein and his son Owen for flying them from New England down to Charleston!


Saturn was a rather feisty turtle on admit! They had a strong heart rate, good respiration rates and they were trying to bite everything! The initial exam showed us that, visually, Saturn looked pretty good. They had a lesion on the left eyelid but both eyes were clear. Diagnostic imaging showed us that they have a mild case of pneumonia and a lot of fecal material in the colon. Saturn was started on fluids and antibiotics. Staff decided that this feisty turtle would likely do well in a full tank of water on night one — and they were right! Saturn had great range of motion in all of their flippers, was taking great breaths and was staying level in the water column. They were cleared to stay in the tank overnight!


December 15, 2022: They showed no interest in eating during the first few days after admit, but that is to be expected after their long journey to the Aquarium. They’ve started eating well and are being started on vitamins this week! They have several antibiotic injections left but overall, they are doing very well!

January 15, 2023: Saturn has finished all of their antibiotic injections and is looking good! They seem to really be enjoying their seagrass enrichment and are eating well. Wish them luck as they continue on their journey to recovery!

February 15, 2023: This little green was able to make a quick recovery in rehab! Based on bloodwork, a physical exam and many other bench marks, it was decided that it was time for Pisces to go home! They made the trek down to Little Talbot Island State Park in Jacksonville, Florida to be released in warmer waters along with eight of their turtle friends. Wish them luck out in the big blue!

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