17 rehabilitated sea turtles returned to the Atlantic Ocean

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SeaWorld Orlando reports that 17 endangered sea turtles were returned to their natural environment by the SeaWorld Orlando rescue team at Canaveral National Seashore in Titusville.

They said that the majority of the returned sea turtles were rescued in New England and flew to Florida for treatment late last year.

In early December, more than 40-cold stunned Kemp's ridley sea turtles arrived at Tampa International Airport to begin rehabilitation at multiple Florida facilities. The reptiles were rescued from frigid northern waters in Massachusetts and stabilized at the New England Aquarium before their cross-country flight.

Upon arrival in Orlando, SeaWorld says that their rescue team conducted full examinations to determine the best treatment for each sea turtle. Many of the animals were suffering from pneumonia, but some were also treated for corneal ulcers and malnutrition. After three months of individualized care, the turtles were cleared for return to the ocean. 

Rescued earlier this winter from the Atlantic Coast, Seaworld says that they also released two green sea turtles to the sea this morning. One of the turtles was treated for shell abrasions and the other for injuries resulting from ingesting fishing line and hooks.

SeaWorld says that they have worked together with government agencies and partner marine life facilities to rescue more than 2,000 sea turtles since 1980. For more than 50 years, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has helped animals in need with the goal of returning them to the wild. More than 31,000 animals have been rescued by the expert animal rescue team.

SeaWorld says that if you see an injured marine animal, you can help by calling the FWC hotline at 888-404-3922 or by dialing *FWC.