Turtle Patient 153: Bruce, Sub-Adult Olive Ridley
Bruce was found entangled with left flipper hanging off by Raffles Maldives in Gaafu Alifu Atoll.
Intake Date: 4 July 2021
Patient Number: 153
Rescue Location: Gaafu Alifu Atoll
Reason: Found entangled
Transport Method: Seaplane
Status: Current patient
Species: Olive ridley
Scientific Name: Lepidochelys olivacea
Length: 56.4 cm
Weight: 16 kg
Bruce has kindly been adopted by Lina Novén & Fredrik Svärd and by Jill Reed.
Bruce is a sub-adult Olive Ridley turtle that was found entangled in a ghost net that had completely cut through his left front flipper. He was found in Gaafu Alifu atoll, one of the southernmost atolls of the Maldives. This makes him the patient who has travelled the furthest out of any of our 153 patients so far–over 500km! Thankfully he is feisty and eating well, and we think we may be able to avoid surgery on his amputated stump.
11 July 2021
Bruce adapted to life here in the Rescue Centre within hours! He started eating immediately and now furiously chases around the food like he’s been doing this for years! He is bright and active and is having daily wound care on his stump – which is already looking better. We are thinking we might be able to avoid surgery but we will continue to monitor closely. He is on antibiotics for his open wound and is still buoyant for now, so we will see how he gets on in the coming months, but we are very happy with how things have started.
18 July 2021
Bruce is eating really well and his wound is looking pretty good. There is a lot of flesh that needs debriding (= removing dead tissue) regularly, but he certainly seems to be moving in the right direction. We are still confident we can avoid surgery.
25 July 2021
Bruce is doing really well; he had a minor surgical procedure to repair his flipper tip as, unfortunately, over the course of his rehab he has damaged it in the tanks. We also removed a few localised abscesses that had been caused by the net on his remaining right flipper. His stump on the left is looking good; the x-ray shows the bone looks fine and is now covered over by healing tissue. His buoyancy hasn’t changed since he arrived and he is still quite buoyant, but he tries to dive a little so we are sure it will improve with time.