Clearwater Marine Aquarium releases huge loggerhead sea turtle back into wild

Pinellas County

CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA) – The Clearwater Marine Aquarium released a threatened loggerhead sea turtle back into the wild on Wednesday.

“Luna,” an adult female loggerhead, is the largest sea turtle the aquarium’s sea turtle rescue and rehabilitation team has cared for in a decade.

She weighed in at 245 lbs at the time of her release.

The aquarium said she was found washed ashore on April 26 on St. Pete Beach by sea turtle trackers.

Luna was lethargic, emaciated and her shell was covered in algae and barnacles.

After gaining 30 lbs during her rehabilitation at the aquarium, she was cleared for released by CMA’s veterinarian and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Luna was released back into the Gulf of Mexico behind the Sandpearl Resort on Clearwater Beach.

The largest sea turtle ever released by CMA was a 291 lb female loggerhead named “Briana” in 2006.

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