Turtle Patient 190: Uno, Juvenile Olive Ridley

Clouseup of turtle patient Uno.

Uno is a juvenile olive ridley who was found floating by a fisherman from Maalhos in Baa Atoll.

The Vitals

Intake Date: 28 June 2022
Patient Number: 190
Rescue Location: Baa Atoll
Reason: Found floating
Transport Method: Speedboat
Status: Released 30 October 2022

Species: Olive ridley
Scientific Name: Lepidochelys olivacea
Sex: Unknown
Age: Juvenile
Length: 40 cm
Weight: 6.7 kg

The Adoptive Parents

Uno has kindly been adopted for Brad by Kendall Fossand, Markus & Elena, Fleck & Reimer-Fleck, for Connor & Callum by Rona Bond, by Jennifer Augstein, for Harry by Charmain, Laura Hiscock, Vladimir, Birgit Ottili Kexel, Michael Bradley, Julia Horvath, for Magdalena, by Christine Young, by Janina, Ballali & Lena, Anna Blair, and by Lizzie.

Uno’s Story

When Uno was rescued, he had abrasions on his carapace, a deep laceration at his front right flipper, a shallower laceration to his front left and was missing the end of his back left flipper. The wounds were fresh when he was found but no signs of a net. There was also bone exposure at the front right flipper.

We have placed Uno on a course of antibiotics to avoid infection of his wounds. X-rays indicate that surgical intervention is not warranted at this point. 

3 July 2022
X-rays strongly suggest that Uno has a bone infection covering almost the entire width of the humerus of the affected flipper. He is currently placedon a course of antibiotics and special care will be taken when handling him, especially with the high risk of fracture at the affected flipper.

10 July 2022
Although both of Uno’s front flippers are functional, his right front flipper is abnormally oriented both at rest and when he is using it. A repeat X-ray 2 week post-rescue did not reveal changes as compared to the ones taken when he first arrived. More regular repeat X-rays will be taken to reassess his right humerus and to guide his treatment plan in the following months.

17 July 2022
Uno continues to use both front flippers well despite the abnormal orientation and range of motion on the right side. He had no issue diving for his food and has an excellent appetite!

24 July 2022
The range of motion Uno’s right front flipper is still abnormal. Despite this, he is using both front flippers well and dives actively for his food!

31 July 2022
Uno is both resting at the bottom of his tank and diving for food. We will repeat his diagnostics next week to reassess his right front flipper and to organize the next plan for him.

7 August 2022
Uno’s repeat diagnostics showed minimal improvement, however – on a positive note – no deterioration neither. We have started him on a course of oral antifungal medication and will be monitoring his progress closely over the next few months.

14 August 2022
Uno’s wound has closed completely. Although the range of motion in his right front flipper is still restricted, we have seen improvement after he was placed in larger tanks where he spent lots of his time diving.

21 August 2022
Uno has been using both front flippers well lately and the range of motion of his right front flipper continues to improve.

28 August 2022
Uno is doing excellently; he enjoys being a permanent resident in a medium tank and is often seen at the window asking for more food. He is using his injured flipper well.

4 September 2022
Uno couldn’t be happier now (except if he was back in the big blue!); he is diving lots and is very active. His appetite is great and he is gaining weight. We hope that we see an improvement in his bone infection so we can release him as soon as possible.

11 September 2022
Uno’s repeat X-rays show consistent positive results. His course of antibiotics is finished, but he will continue his anti-fungal medication until late October. We will repeat Uno’s diagnostics fortnightly to guide the next steps in his treatment once his course of medications is complete.

There has been significant improvement in the use of his right front flipper after we moved him to the larger tanks. Just like Gus, Uno has no issue diving for his food at the bottom of his tank and he uses both front flippers with good range of movement, close to or almost symmetrically sometimes.

18 September 2022
Similarly to Gus, Uno dives to the bottom of the medium tank for food speedily and with good range of motion in both front flippers. Although the positioning and usage of the right front flipper remains abnormal, he has improved tremendously when compared to the day he arrived at the Rescue Centre.

25 September 2022
Uno is using his right front flipper well but with a slightly shorter range of movement. He dives confidently to the bottom of his tank for food and enjoys his meals. Just like Gus, Uno is currently on a course of antifungal medication till the end of October this year. We expect Uno to be the next turtle to be released from the Rescue Centre!

2 October 2022
Uno dives and swims with a good range of motion in his right front flipper. There is also some slight improvement seen on his X-rays recently, however, the bone deformity at his right front flipper is expected to be permanent due to previous injury.

9 October 2022
Uno has a great appetite and never fails to get his food from the bottom of his tank speedily. He dives confidently and uses all flippers well.

16 October 2022
Uno is doing excellently. He continues to show his diving skills to the guests visiting the Rescue Centre. The bone in the right front flipper is healing slowly and he is using the flipper well. As we previously mentioned, we don’t think it will be long before we consider releasing Uno.

23 October 2022
We repeated Uno’s X- rays this week and they show that his right flipper continues to heal. This is good news for Uno and means that he can go back to being a wild turtle soon.

30 October 2022
Uno went back home today! He dived in the blue with excellent use of all flippers and we are so happy to have been able to successfully rehabilitate another injured olive ridley turtle.