All Turtle Patients

Meet Azura, An Adult Female Ghost Net Victim

Azura was found by Dharavandhoo island in Baa Atoll and we collected her by speedboat.

Intake Date: 2nd April 2019
Length: 60.5 cm
Weight: 17.9 kg
Status: Current Patient

Azura has been adopted by Kristina Feigl, by Linda, by Sandro and Murielle Wiedmer, Silke Fuchs, Alfiya Sattarova, Axelle Defossez, for Preston by Scott Lea, by Michelle, Polly Westley, Ursula Simacek, for Katy by Sally, for Elena by Nicole Wissler, by Sassan Ahsani, by the Saywhat Bottle Team, by Rebeca, Glen & Louis Austin, for Kim by Angela, by John Cappeluti, Gail Ruth Tonnessen and by Tangled Seas, Trinidad Serna, Winnie Barron and for Adam by Serena Dawson.

Azura had a very severely infected front flipper after being entangled in a ghost net. She needed an amputation and responded well to treatment. The infection ran deep into her shoulder. She has lost most of the tissue in that area, but despite this, we have managed to treat the infection to stop it spreading further.

The deep wound in her shoulder has now healed completely and her shoulder looks fantastic compared to when she first came in.

20 July 2019
Azura also had some proliferative tissue, called proud flesh, on her nose, which occurred due to trauma to the area. Vet Jackie performed surgery to remove this mass; Azura recovered well and her nose healed up fast. She was quickly back to her usual self, minus the mass, which means her nostrils are no longer at risk of obstruction.

27 July 2019
Azura remains buoyant and continues to try to launch herself at her food. However, she loves feeding time and eats enthusiastically. We had to get new long tongs so our hands could be far away from her mouth when we feed her. We are also encouraging her to eat under water and she has made some progress on that, but still occasionally misses a food item. She watches it sink to the bottom of the tank whilst looking longingly at it, not managing to dive for it. Don’t worry, we always retrieve it for her!

3 August 2019
Azura is still eating well below the water line, however, she rushes at her food and occasionally drops one. The final scab from her shell injury has fallen off and it is now healing in well.

10 August 2019
Azura has been moved to the other side of the large tank to encourage her to dive. She has actually been an angel this week, not trying to fight Thomas through the barrier, and enjoying the bigger space.

17 August 2019
Azura enjoyed the space in the large tank this week. She is still buoyant with not much of a change. Her appetite is great, and we are monitoring her nose lesion which may be getting slightly larger. Fingers crossed it doesn’t grow any more.

26 August 2019
Azura’s bone lesion is no longer showing active infection, so she has stopped antibiotic treatment. Her nose mass appears to be growing back, however. It is not as large as the first time, but we will continue to assess whether it requires another surgery.

2 September 2019
Azura has been well this week. However, she is still floating quite high in the water and cannot dive, even though she wants to! Her appetite is ravenous and the volunteers really need to watch their fingers around her.

11 September 2019
Azura has had a good week. She is still eating well. We are monitoring her nose mass which has grown back, but is not as large as last time. It may require more surgery down the track.  She is still buoyant. She also had an x-ray this week to be sure her osteomyelitis lesion is still stable and it is – which is fabulous.

23 September 2019
Azura is doing well. She is as feisty as always and food is still the most important thing on her mind. She enjoyed her fish-cicle frozen enrichment this week. Although she is still buoyant, she was seen trying to dive, so she certainly isn’t giving up on the dream of making it to the bottom! 

1 October 2019
Azura is still buoyant this week. She is not a fan of the floating ball and got bored with it fairly quickly. Her appetite is great and we are waiting for the results regarding the mass on her nose.    

7 October 2019
Azura has been trying to dive this week but is still buoyant. When Thomas leaves us, she will move to the big tank where she will have more space to practice. She also needs a touch up surgery on her nose mass. Our Visiting Vet Dr. Francesco brought us some special medication to hopefully keep it under control! 

14 October 2019
Azura had her touch up nose surgery this week and we are applying a new medication to hopefully keep the mass from recurring. She is being moved this week to our new Turtle Rehabilitation Centre at One and Only Reethi Rah to finish her recuperation. She will be able to practice her diving and will be well cared for by our resident Sea Turtle Biologist Laura.

16 October 2019
Azura was successfully transferred to her new home at One & Only Reethi Rah via sea plane and speedboat. She has settled in well.

13 November 2019
Azura has been settling in well at One & Only, she has been enjoying her ocean swims to provide some mental stimulation during her rehabilitation and loves to play with the submerged buoys in the tank that our Sea Turtle Biologist made as enrichment.

Dr Jackie Reed also recently visited for a check up of Azura. She took a physical examination and unfortunately her bone infection has flared up again. She will therefore be put on a course of antibiotics and given a lot of rest to recover. Fortunately she has a lovely big tank all to herself where she will receive lots of yummy fresh seafood and TLC at One & Only Reethi Rah.

18 November 2019
Azura is recovering nicely from her bone infection. The swelling of her flipper has gone down significantly since she has been on antibiotics, so we will shortly be taking off her anti inflammatory medication and continue her course of antibiotics. To treat this poorly girl, our dive team brought her back a jellyfish; she was very interested and enjoyed her special treat. This will also aid with mental stimulation and enrichment.

25 November 2019
Azura is still recovering from her buoyancy syndrome and we are happy that she is also recovering well from her bone infection in her remaining flipper. She is still on antibiotics but is showing good progress with using her front flipper to swim. Azura will start to go back out for weekly ocean swims with our Sea Turtle Biologist now that she is showing good recovery. Azura also enjoyed her spa day where she was given a good scrub due to algae build up.

13 January 2020
Azura has been making a lot of progress with her buoyancy syndrome. She has also finished her antibiotic course for her bone infection in her flipper. Since her recovery, she has been showing significant improvement with her diving on our lagoon swims, and hopefully she will start to dive more frequently in her tank.

20 January 2020
Azura has a really healthy appetite and is showing more and more progress with her diving during our lagoon sessions. To keep her motivated to dive in her tank, we attach food to a submerged buoy which she has to “hunt”. And she really goes for it!

28 January 2020
Azura is still showing steady progress with her diving. We have lowered her submerged buoy as she was reaching the previous level with ease. To monitor her health, we also weigh her weekly. She is maintaining a constant weight of 24.4 kg and looking really healthy! She was taken out for a swim, but much like people, it just wasn’t her day and she wasn’t in the mood to dive too much. Azura is a real character and really showed her diva side, but we still love her. She is still extremely excited and motivated by food, so to show how much we care, our chef prepared lobster for her the other day too.

3 February 2020
Azura is still practicing her diving in the tank. She has been working hard to reach her submerged buoy and she is able to dive down to 41 cm so far. We are lowering it every couple of days to try and motivate her to dive more often. Azura enjoyed her last lagoon session with seeing all the fish; she was not in the mood to dive but enjoyed a different scenery.

10 February 2020
Azura has been enjoying all the yummy seafood particularly the fresh prawns the chefs have been specially providing for her. She is much more motivated to dive when we attach food (particularly prawns) to her buoy, so every few days we lower it to make her dove deeper. The weather has not been suitable to go out for a lagoon swim, but once it calms down, Azura will enjoy being in the sea with all the fish which can provide some mental stimulation in captivity.

24 February 2020
Azura has been a little less of a diva lately. She was also very happy to go out on a lagoon swim and dived down 6 times! She dived deeper than we have observed before, so this is great news and we hope that she will continue to make more progress. She is proving to be very popular with everyone at the resort and we love her unique and sassy personality!

2 March 2020
Azura is getting more motivated to dive in her tank, but only if prawns or lobster are involved… Definitely a girl that enjoys the finer things in life! However, her healthy appetite and interest in diving is great to see, and gives us hope that she will eventually improve.

6 April 2020
Azura is still working on her buoyancy; she seems to get lower in the water and is managing to dive deeper for her food. She is a real favourite of ours, especially our turtle biologists (but don’t tell Eve!!). It is great to see Azura showing gradual improvement with her buoyancy and still having a very healthy appetite.

13 April 2020
Azura has been enjoying more lagoon swims to focus on improving her buoyancy and was treated to a yummy iceblock full of her favourite seafood this week!

20 April 2020
Azura is showing more interest in trying to dive down in the tank by herself without being prompted with food. This is good progress for her as she can be a little bit lazy! We hope she will continue to try to dive more.

18 May 2020
Azura is beeing treated like a queen these days as she is lavished with her favourite seafood, including crab and lobster! She will especially push herself to dive for these – which is great to see! Since the weather has been too rough we haven’t managed to take her out for a swim, but look forward to seeing how much she has progressed with diving when it is safe to do so.

22 June 2020
Azura is still buoyant but has enjoyed her lagoon swims when we have been able to go out as the weather has been a little rough recently. However, she is still highly motivated to dive for food! Especially for prawns and lobsters. We hope she will keep making steady progress.

23 July 2020
Due to the temporary closing of our Rehabilitation Centre at One & Only Reethi Rah, we relocated Azura back to Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu on 11 July 2020. Our Sea Turtle Biologist, Laura, transported Azura, and picke up our new patient Coral on the way, to the Marine Turtle Rescue Centre by speed boat – a 4 hour round trip.

Azura has settled in well back at the Marine Turtle Rescue Center – it is nice to have her back, but we would have preferred to release her. Unfortunately, she is still not diving well enough to survive in the wild.

27 September 2020

After her return to the Rescue Centre in Baa Atoll from the Rehabilitation Centre at One and Only Reethi Rah in North Malé Atoll, Azura has settled in well to life back at Coco Palm. She is still buoyant but she definitely makes a concerted effort.

Although there hasn’t been much change, we feel the trend is in the right direction. She dived down to 2.5 metres on a recent sea swim! We have collected some crabs for her which she absolutely loves, and she tries to dive a little when she goes to catch them! She has some x-rays scheduled for this week to re-assess her ongoing buoyancy issues.