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Date ArticleType
7/12/2016 Member News
Clearwater Marine Aquarium - Endangered Sea Turtle Release on Wednesday

Clearwater Marine Aquarium to release 5th rehabilitated sea turtle in less than four weeks – open to the public

Clearwater, FL (Monday, July 11, 2016) –Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA) will release “Norbert,” a rehabilitated, endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, on Clearwater Beach this Wednesday, July 13th, at 10:30am near the Sandpearl Resort. Media and the public are invited to attend.

Norbert is the 5th sea turtle released by the aquarium in less than a month. Fellow Harry Potter-themed turtles “Bellatrix” and “Kreacher” preceded Norbert in their return to the gulf, along with “Guadalajara” and “Wonder Woman.” This summer has also been promising for loggerhead sea turtle nesting, as the CMA nesting patrol team has surpassed their record-breaking nest count from 2013 with 231 nests at the halfway mark of the season.

Discovered near Pier 60 on Clearwater Beach, Norbert, a juvenile Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, was brought to Clearwater Marine Aquarium on May 26, 2016 after being caught on a hook. A popular fishing location, Pier 60 is one of the few piers around the state of Florida involved with the Responsible Pier Initiative Program. This program supplies piers and their employees with the equipment and training needed to safely assist in sea turtle rescues related to hook/line ingestion and entanglement. Fortunately, Norbert was rescued using this equipment by one of the pier’s volunteer fishermen.

The following day, Norbert was x-rayed to assess depth and positioning of the hook. Dr. Shelly Marquardt performed the successful hook removal. After the surgery, Norbert received vinegar rinses daily, TPN (total parenteral nutrition) administered intravenously, and periodic endoscopic procedures to assess the healing of his esophagus. Norbert’s rehabilitation progressed rapidly and he has been cleared for release by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Dr. Marquardt.

Photos of Norbert’s intake and treatment are available here for download:
https://spaces.hightail.com/receive/8zGTi/YnJvbXpla0BjbWFxdWFyaXVtLm9yZw

Norbert will return home to the ocean at 10:30am on Wednesday near the Sandpearl Resort. Attending Media are encouraged to arrive no later than 10:00am for idea viewing. To learn more and join Duke Energy in supporting CMA’s turtle program, visit www.seewinter.com/donate.