SARASOTA, Fla. (WFLA) — A sea turtle found tangled in fishing line and missing a flipper was returned to the ocean on Tuesday after undergoing rehabilitation at Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium in Sarasota.
“Waves”, a juvenile green sea turtle of unknown gender, was found near the Seafood Shack Marina in Cortez — which is near Bradenton Beach — in May. Mote said Waves was in rough shape — it had fishing line wrapped around its left front flipper and its mouth. Waves was also missing one of its rear flippers.
Mote said that while examining the turtle, they discovered it swallowed a spinner hook and had multiple fibropapilloma tumors. After starting antibiotics, anti-inflamitories and fluids, Waves began to eat and eventually passed the hook and some fishing line. Mote said the turtle underwent surgery to remove the tumors.
After Waves regained use of its front flipper, it was cleared for release. Mote staff gathered at Lido Beach on Tuesday morning to see the turtle off as it swam off into the Gulf of Mexico.