Turtle Patient 235: Kurumba, Adult Female Olive Ridley

Turtle patient Kurumba recovering in the tank at the Rescue Centre. Image.

Kurumba, an adult female olive ridley, was found entangled by the dive team of Sandies Bathala Resort in North Ari Atoll

The Vitals

Admission Date: 19 February 2024
Patient Number: 235
Rescue Location: North Ari Atoll
Reason: Found Entangled
Transport Method: Speedboats + Seaplanes
Status: Current patient

Species: Olive ridley
Scientific Name: Lepidochelys olivacea
Sex: Female
Age: Adult
Length: 66.3 cm
Weight: 31.9 kg

The Adoptive Parents

Kurumba has kindly been adopted by Alexander & Nina Ludewig, by Viviane Lehmann and by Kay Braithwaite.

Kurumba’s Story

Kurumba, which means “young coconut” in Dhivehi, is an adult olive ridley who was found entangled by the dive team of Sandies Bathala Resort in North Ari Atoll. After disentangling her front flippers, which were deeply embedded in the net, they realised that Kurumba was unable to dive, so the team retrieved her and called our veterinary team for advice.

Kurumba spent the night at the resort before embarking on a lengthy journey the next morning. To reach the Rescue Centre, she traveled by two speedboats and two seaplanes! We extend our appreciation to Transmaldivian Airways for facilitating these transfers and to Sandies Bathala Resort for constructing a custom-made travel box and looking after he over night.

Once she arrived at the Rescue Centre, we gave Kurumba a thorough health assessment, including physical examination, X-rays, full blood work, and neurological evaluation. She sustained abrasions and ligature injuries across all flippers, carapace, and head, with the right front flipper having the most severe damage. Fortunately, Kurumba’s limbs remain fracture-free, and she retains full range of motion. Additionally, she is undergoing treatment for a gastrointestinal condition.

Kurumba has been adjusting well to her new environment and eats everything we offer her. Following initial days of rest and stabilisation, she is scheduled for surgery to address all wounds, in the hopes to start a speedy path to recovery!

Curiosity: In the Maldives, the coconut tree holds significant cultural importance with each stage of the fruit development bearing distinct names and significance. The three edible stages are known as: Kurumba, which represents the earliest phase when the coconut is tender and abundant in water; as it matures, it transforms into Gabulhi; and finally it ripens into Kaashi. Kurumbas are particularly prized for their tender flesh and high water content, often enjoyed as refreshing coconut drinks throughout the country.

12 March 2024
Kurumba’s gastrointestinal condition is already showing signs of improvement and she is diving and resting on the bottom with no difficulty. She underwent surgery successfully and is recovering well. With her feisty nature, we are hopeful for Kurumba’s swift recovery.

7 April 2024
Kurumba’s injuries are showing great progress. She retains full range of motion of all flippers and is receiving regular wound care and cold laser therapy to promote further healing. Late last month, she started showing more refined dietary preferences, to which our team is trying to oblige and keep her interested. Although Kurumba is able to dive, she prefers to rest at the surface. We are monitoring her gastro-intestinal condition closely.

12 May 2024
Kurumba’s recovery from the ligature injury on her right front flipper has been progressing well thanks to cold laser therapy sessions and consistent wound care. Additionally, her carapace lesion is nearly fully healed. However, in the past month, we observed an infection developing in a puncture wound near her hip area. As a result, she underwent another surgery last week to clean the area, and we’ve adjusted her medical therapy accordingly.

9 June 2024
Kurumba has shown improvement in the last month, regaining both her appetite and her feistiness. While there still is some infection in her puncture wound, it has not progressed any further and is showing signs of recovery. Kurumba has now been started on Targeted External Weight Therapy (TEWT) along with submersible buoy feeding sessions to assist in her to dive training. So far she has been very determined and is progressing well.

Adopt Kurumba

When you symbolically adopt one of our turtle patients you will receive:

  • A personalised digital adoption certificate with the history of your adopted turtle patient
  • A fact sheet about the species of sea turtle you have adopted
  • Updates on how your adopted turtle’s recovery is going (if you wish)
  • Your name featured on our website (if you wish)
  • Notification in the case of a release

We ask for a minimum one time gift donation of £50 to adopt a turtle patient. £50 will contribute to the cost of medical therapy for one patient for two weeks. You can also choose to make a monthly donation of your choice.

Once we receive confirmation of the donation and your adoption form (please make sure the names on the donation and adoption forms match), we will issue the adoption certificate with details about the turtle patient to you or the gift recipient. Please allow 7 days for the issuing of the certificate.

By adopting one of our turtle patients, you will contribute towards the cost of our patients’ veterinary care, medications, and transport. You will also help fund our core charitable objectives to protect sea turtles and their habitats through rescue and rehabilitation, scientific research, and education and outreach.