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Popular Sea Turtle Will Soon Wave Goodbye To Adventure Aquarium

CAMDEN, NJ (CBS) -- A young sea turtle who spent the last year at the Adventure Aquarium is getting a fine send-off, thanks to donations flowing to the Camden facility over a three day period.

Guests and staff raised nearly $7400 to help sea turtles in the wild, including Koopa, now a yearling loggerhead. Nicole Grandinetti, curator of Fish and Invertebrates at the Aquarium said it is an important and crowing issue.

"Most sea turtles, six of the seven species, are critically endangered."

Grandinetti said they work with the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores as well.

"They get these nest stragglers, and then we take one of them for the year to make them stronger and teach them how to catch their own food in the wild."

In the coming days, Koopa will be shoving off for the North Carolina coast, and released from a boat into the Gulf Stream.

"They don't have that little scurry out to the ocean," she said. "When sea turtle hatchlings come out of the nest, only one in a thousand survive that."

Grandinetti said sea turtles like Koopa are vulnerable when they are young hatchlings, and they have a better chance of surviving when large enough to return to their natural home.

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