PORT ARANSAS, Texas — The Animal Rehabilitation Keep in Port Aransas will be releasing five turtles on Labor Day.
The folks who work there have been using social media to get the community more involved and invested in these turtles.
Alicia Walker, the ARK Program Coordinator, started using Facebook live to introduce each of the turtles who will be released on Sept. 2.
"You get to see them go away and that's a great experience, but if you can learn more about what brought them here, then you get invested in their story," Walker says, "and so it makes a bigger impact watching them go free."
People who have been following the tales of these turtles have gotten to know them and their stories.
One of these soon-to-be-released turtles is Captain Jack Sparrow. He is an adult, male, Kemp's Ridley, who came in with an injured flipper and a bone infection. He was featured on the ARK's Facebook live today.
Facebook followers have also created a special connection with Loggerhead turtle, Paul Bunyan. This is because they got to suggest names for the turtle in comments on Facebook.
Alicia and her staff then voted on the options, deciding on Paul Bunyan.
"It's not just for these turtles, it's for all turtles," Walker says, "If someone gets more invested in Miss Marvel or Mr. Paul Bunyan, then maybe they will be more invested in all of the turtles that they see out in the wild."
The release will be on Mustang Island at mile marker 35 starting at 10 a.m.
These turtles will return to the ocean on Tony Amos' birthday. He was the founder of the ARK and passed away two years ago.
To get to know the other turtles being released, check out ARK's Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ARKWildlifeRehab/?epa=SEARCH_BOX