Cold Stunned Turtles Recover in Florida

Snowbirds aren’t the only ones who have come to Florida to escape the cold weather. In December dozens of cold-stressed sea turtles were delivered to Central Florida from New England, where they were being rescued in record numbers.

The turtles arrived in Orlando by a Coast Guard plane, in a flight arranged by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which oversees sea-turtle protection. The turtles were distributed across Florida with five loggerhead turtles taken to the Volusia County Marine Science Center in Ponce Inlet and 20 turtles to SeaWorld Orlando’s rehabilitation facility.

Early season cold temperatures in New England created a huge influx of stunned sea turtles for the New England Aquarium, where the turtles were treated before being flown to Florida. Although the “season” is not yet over, the aquarium has already treated a record number.

While the Volusa aquarium has the capacity to treat 100 sea turtles, they had received more than 100 by early December and were forced to move turtles to other facilities throughout the region.

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