All Turtle Patients

Meet Kurt, A Juvenile Hawksbill

Kurt was a juvenile hawksbill turtle that was found close to Lux Resort in Ari Atoll. It took Kurt two sea plane journeys to reach the Rescue Centre.

Intake Date: 18th October 2018
Length: 34.5 cm
Weight: 4.5 kg
Status: Deceased 22nd October 2018


Kurt appeared to be “choking” underwater when he was found. He was so sick that he allowed a team of snorkelers to take him to the island and send him to us.

We immediately took Kurt to Eydhafushi Hospital for an x-ray. The x-ray showed that was suffering from pneumonia, stomatitis (mouth infection), conjunctivitis and widespread oedema (fluid build up under the skin). His shell was soft and he was generally very debilitated.

We gave him a small sedation to examine his throat, however, there were no signs of anything stuck preventing him from breathing. Under sedation we could also examine Kurt’s eyes properly: we removed a large piece of solid pus from his right eye. Due to Kurt’s critical condition, and the likelihood that he would not eat, we also placed a feeding tube into his stomach.

Unfortunately, Kurt experienced bleeding problems after the feeding tube was placed, and his blood did not clot. We had to perform a second emergency surgery that evening to try and stem the bleeding. He also did not wake up properly from the sedation and was still sleepy 36 hours later. There was still a little bit of bleeding after the surgery, but not as much as before.

Kurt was unable to clot his blood even from a needle passing through his skin when we administered his various injections. He was breathing well and was treated with various medications, but sadly Kurt passed away.

At post-mortem we found that Kurt had widespread fluid accumulation in his body and lungs, a bleeding disorder, which meant he could not clot his blood and was bleeding into his muscles and gut, a gut problem possibly caused by a parasite, and a liver issue. We did everything we could for this little turtle, but he was too sick to recover.