SeaWorld returned an endangered baby Hawksbill sea turtle back to nature after a successful recovery stay at the park's Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Center.
SeaWorld aquarists released the little turtle several miles off the shore of Jupiter, FL into large areas of seaweed. The seaweed serves as a floating nursery for the hatchling and provides a critical hiding place from predators.
The reptilian refugee was rescued off the North Carolina coast during this winter's “cold-stunned” event when more than 300 hundred chilled turtles wound up at SeaWorld due to the unexpectedly cold and extended winter in the southeastern United States.
The Hawkbill's selective eating habits and inability to co-habitat with other turtle species made its trek to Orlando imperative for its survival. SeaWorld, a global leader in turtle rescue, is well-equipped and has the expertise to tend to this special patient's particular needs.
Since the Sea Turtle Rescue Program started in 1980, SeaWorld has rescued more than 1,300 turtles.