Turtle Patient Update Issue 7 | 2021

Last Updated: September 14, 2021


Dinah, Arrived 19 August 2021, Released 27 August 2021

Hawksbuill turtle patient Dinah with raised flippers. Image.

Just before Dr Minnie left for her holiday, we had a new arrival: a juvenile hawksbill named Dinah. Dinah was found washed ashore and very weak, in Gili Lankanfushi resort. After an initial triage she was found to be full of ingesta and also held her front flippers tightly under her body. As the week progressed, she had passed large faeces, began to swim normally and gained quite an appetite!

We released Dinah on Saturday 27th August since she no longer showed any outward signs of illness. We wish Dinah the best of luck in the wild!

Owen, Arrived 18 June 2021, Released 11 September 2011

Sea turtle patien Owen, hawksbill, in his tank at the ORP Rescue Centre. Image.

Owen had his first dose of anti-fluke medication (an anti-worm treatment) this month, but unfortunately he had been a little uninterested in food so this has proved to be quite difficult. Crabs seemed to be his preferred choice so we were spoiling him when possible!

Owen did seem a little depressed in captivity staying at the bottom of the tank, so we decided that the best option for him was to release him so he can forage for himself. We are thrilled to announce that we released Owen back into the wild last week! He went off with no issues and dived straight down into the depths. His release video is on our Facebook and Instagram channels. We hope he will be happy and healthy in the wild with plenty of room to swim!

Jude, Arrived 30 July 2021, Released 11 August 2021

Turtle patient Jude in his tank at the ORP turtle Rehabilitation Centre. Image.

We are thrilled to announce that Jude was successfully released last month! She took her time to find her bearings but the moment she hit the ocean, she was off! We were ecstatic to see her diving straight away – she made her way beyond the reef with no problems. We wish her all the luck back in the wild. You can find footage of the release on our Facebook and Instagram accounts.


Moana, Arrived 4 September 2021, Deceased 12 September 2021

Medical checkup of turtle patient Moana. Image.

Moana was a new patient, found by the boat crew from Coco Bodu Hithi. She was a very young juvenile olive ridley turtle, weighing just 5kg. She had very deep cuts on both front flippers and her back left flipper. She also has a lot of bite marks from what appear to have been shark attacks. In spite of all this, she seemed to be getting on just fine – she was strong and active. We had planned to transport her to our rescue centre at Coco Palm, but unfortunately just 24 hours before she was due to travel, she passed away. Her post-mortem showed that the damage to her flippers was severe and the shark bites had cut straight through her plastron. We determined her cause of death as malnutrition and extensive damage caused by her entanglement. She is now at peace and no longer in any pain.

The Resident Patients

Tibby, Arrived 26 July 2021

Turtle patient Tibby in her tank with raised flipper. Image.

Tibby has been eating really well and has even been able to dive on sea swims and, more recently, in the large tank at the rescue centre. He is on eye drops and wound care regularly but is otherwise doing remarkably well following his harrowing ordeal with the sharks and the ghost net. This week, Tibby even reached the bottom of his tank, stealing Amber’s food while he was down there! This is very encouraging for his journey to recovery.

Bruce, Arrived 4 July 2021

Turtle patient Bruce closeup. Image.

Bruce is doing well and has a good appetite. He is currently sharing a tank with Amber, and they are tolerating each other well. We took Bruce swimming this month and he swam half the length of the island!

Though he is not able to dive yet, hopefully in time as he gains strength he will attempt to do so. He does try to dive for food and on sea swims but is unable to get under the water at the moment. He will be travelling back with Joe and Amber to One & Only where he shall have more space. We hope this, along with regular sea swims, will encourage him to start diving.

Jannicke, Arrived 31 May 2021

Turtle patient Jannicke withher head raised. Image.

Jannicke seems to be doing very well, she is a strong and feisty turtle. She is just finishing up her course of antibiotics following the discovery of her osteomyelitis (bone infection) in her front flipper. Her x-rays following the medication look promising. Providing that she remains strong, keeps diving well and remains infection free, Jannicke should be ready for release in a couple of weeks, when Dr Minnie returns!

Amber – Arrived 2 March 2021

Turtle patient Amber with her flipper raised. Image.

Amber’s wound is healing well thanks to regular wound cleans and topical medications. Her x-rays show that the osteolytic (bone destruction) area seems to have settled with her course of antibiotics. The wound is still quite deep but is healing nicely. Amber had also developed a slight eye infection, which she was given antibiotic eye drops for. Fortunately the eye infection seems to have cleared up.

Amber is still diving well. Once she has finished her full course of antibiotics, we will be able to release her! Since she no longer needs veterinary care, she was transferred from the Rescue Centre at Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu to the Rehabilitation Centre at One & Only Reethi Rah this week. She will reside at the here until she is ready for release.

Xena – Arrived 1 November 2020

Turtle patient Xena, left profile. Image.

Despite remaining fairly active and eating well, Xena continues to struggle with her buoyancy. It was decided that she needed a full veterinary assessment (x-rays, blood tests and an endoscopy) at our Rescue Centre at Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu to get to the bottom of her issues and improve her chance of release. Xena was safely sent to Coco Palm by boat under the care of biologist Joe last week and is having blood tests and x-rays to determine how her recovery is progressing. Xena dealt with the stress of the journey really well and is lively, eating lots of fish and even attempting to dive on her sea swims, which is great to see!

Discovery – Arrived 7th February 2020

Turtle patient Disco floating in her t ank. Image.

Disco is unfortunately still very buoyant. We removed some air from Disco’s coelom, but unfortunately she had a prolonged recovery from the anaesthesia. She is doing okay now, but still buoyant.

Dr Claire was able to bring out the new endoscope with her from the UK and when Dr Minnie returns, we will attempt to use the endoscope inside her lungs to assess the level of damage. Otherwise she is eating well and is active. She enjoyed her sea swim this week where she tried chasing Dr. Claire around in the shallows.

Azura – Arrived 2nd April 2019

Turtle patient Azura with her chin up. Image.

Azura is lively as ever, swimming and eating well in her tank! She is still floating but was showing good progress on sea swims a few weeks ago. Unfortunately on this week’s sea swim she didn’t do as well but we will keep these a regular occurrence and hopefully she will show signs of improvement soon.buoy lower to increase the difficulty!

Heidi – Arrived 21st April 2018

Heidi in his tank. Image.

Our long-term patient Heidi is doing well. We are still striving to find him a forever home at an aquarium to become an ambassador for ghost gear injuries.

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