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Aquarium Releases 2 Rescued Sea Turtles In Cape Cod

BOSTON (CBS) -- Two rescued turtles were released off a Cape Cod beach on Wednesday.

The turtles - a loggerhead sea turtle and a Kemp's ridley sea turtle - were rescued by the Massachusetts Audubon Society after they became stranded on Cape Cod over the winter. The New England Aquarium's Animal Care Center in Quincy rehabilitated the turtles and satellite-tagged them before release.

Sarah DiCarlo, New England Aquarium biologist; Bob Prescott, emeritus director of the turtle program at Mass Audubon; Teresa Padvaiskas, New England Aquarium volunteer; and Sarah Perez, New England Aquarium biologist, release two sea turtles on Thursday. (Photo credit: New England Aquarium)

The endangered Kemp's ridley turtle, named Aluminum, has actually been stranded twice, once in Eastham 2017 and again in Sandwich in 2019. Aluminum spent eight months in rehabilitation, going from 13½ pounds to 21 pounds.

"This is rare to have one turtle strand twice, so we are tagging this turtle to understand its behavior," said Connie Merigo, the Aquarium's Rescue Department Manager who oversaw the turtles' release today.

The threatened species loggerhead turtle, named Strontium, was stranded in Truro in December. After months of care, Strontium went from 69½ pounds to 90 pounds.

Nearly every year in the fall, sea turtles become stranded on Cape Cod's beaches after becoming "cold-stunned" from weeks of hypothermia and the inability to feed, which occurs when New England waters quickly turn cold each fall. The Aquarium named its rescued turtles this year with names from the periodic table of elements.


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