Brevard Zoo sees influx of sea turtle patients

MELBOURNE, Fla., March 12, 2019 — Brevard Zoo’s Sea Turtle Healing Center admitted 13 green sea turtles between Friday and Sunday. The cause of this influx is unknown.

The turtles arrived in a debilitated state, laden with algae and barnacles that interfered with their ability to swim. Some are suffering from additional ailments like inflammation and sepsis. They are being treated with fluids, antibiotics, vitamins, nutritional support and a safe place to rest.

Though the Healing Center typically only holds around 12 sea turtles at a time, staff and volunteers creatively reconfigured the space to accommodate an all-time high of 26 patients as other facilities in the state also neared capacity. On Monday, 12 turtles were transferred to the Turtle Hospital in Marathon.

“We’re working as hard as we can to get these guys back on their flippers and out in the ocean,” said Shanon Gann, the Zoo’s sea turtle program manager. “Situations like this underscore the importance of sea turtle rehabilitation in our state and we hope to expand our facility in the near future.”

Individuals who find sea turtles that appear to be in distress should call Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-3922 or Sea Turtle Preservation Society at 321-676-1701.

Brevard Zoo is home to more than 900 animals representing 195 species from all over the world. As a not-for-profit organization, it is a leader in the fields of animal wellness, education and conservation. More information is available at

Treetop Trek features five aerial obstacle courses that whisk guests above parts of the Zoo and through lush Florida landscapes. More information is available at

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