CAPE COD, Mass. (WSVN) – A Florida turtle hospital is preparing for the release of more than 50 sea turtles that faces the cold waters of Cape Cod.
The turtles swam north over the summer where they faced the shores of Cape Cod, suffering from hypothermia in the dangerous conditions. The New England Aquarium Sea Turtle Hospital rescued the turtles and nursed them back to normal.
On Friday, the 52 endangered sea turtles boarded a plane headed back to the Florida Panhandle. “These are young sea turtles that can feed on crabs during the summer,” said an employee at the New England Aquarium Sea Turtle Hospital. “They begin on the north side of the Cape. The Cape is a really big navigation problem for animals. The survivability goes way down now as the water temperature goes down.”
Ken Andrews is joined by his wife, Kristi, who offered to fly the turtles back to Florida. Both are living in Michigan. Aquarium officials sent an urgent request for anyone willing to volunteer flying the turtles back home.
“We’ve done dog rescues in the past,” said Kristi. “My husband actually got an email about the turtle rescue. So, he forwarded it to me, being the animal lover. I reached out on Facebook to sign us up. Two weeks later, here we are!”
Once in the Sunshine State, the turtles will finish their rehabilitation before being released into the wild. “Instead of having to swim back down, they’ll be able to fly,” said an employee at the New England Aquarium Sea Turtle Hospital. “A very short ride to be able to put them back in the Gulf of Mexico to continue their rehab.”
“We knew this was a great way of giving back,” said Ken. “It takes our love of aviation and our love of animals and puts it all in one place. It’s really a great cause.”
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