The Texas State Aquarium has now released 73 of the 80 cold-stunned sea turtles they had received during the weekends' cold-stunning event.
According to a release from the TSA, the remaining seven turtles will continue to receive medical attention until they are ready to be release.
On Feb. 4 and 5, the TSA's Wildlife Rescue team admitted 80 cold-stunned green sea turtles from the Padre Island National Seashore and the Texas Sealife Center. The sea turtles were found in the shallow bay systems on the Laguna Madre.
The release states in order to make room for the sea turtles, the TSA temporarily closed a portion of its ground floor and used one of the exhibits to hold the temporary guests. The sea turtles stayed in two large holding systems that provided adequate water temperature for their recovery.
After a few days of care from the aquarium's Rescue, Animal Care and Animal Health teams, and the ocean temperature returned to 58-degrees, the National Marine Fisheries gave the okay to return the turtles to the water.
The release states on Feb. 7, the aquarium released three of the largest sea turtles with the help of the Port Aransas U.S. Coast Guard Station.
On Feb. 8, 70 more sea turtles were released on a beach off Bob Hall Pier in Corpus Christi. The Texas Sealife Center, Padre Island National Seashore, and Amos Rehabilitation Keep - ARK at UT Marine Science Institute also participated in the release.
“Supporting wildlife conservation is an essential part of the aquarium’s mission, and it is fulfilling to be able to contribute to the preservation of the sea turtle population who live right in our shores,” TSA President and CEO Jesse Gilbert said in the release. “It’s an honor to be able to assist in the recovery of this vulnerable species, and we are thrilled to see these animals re-released into the Gulf and continue on their journey.”
To learn more about the Texas State Aquarium's Wildlife Rescue Center and donate to the rescue and recovery of sea turtles, shorebirds, raptors and marine mammals, click here.