TOPSAIL ISLAND, NORTH CAROLINA

huntington's beautiful face
HUNTINGTON Loggerhead
(Caretta caretta) 
Juvenile
Admitted 9/4/98
AGE:    10-14 years 
Weight 47.8 kg at release
Length (SCL) 72 cm
PCV at release 34 (up from 13)
RELEASED 6/23/99

Huntington's shell trouble
Huntington on arrival 9/98                                                   Huntington 12/98
THE INJURY/ILLNESS: This sea turtle was found at daybreak by sea turtle volunteers at Huntington State Park, Georgetown Co., South Carolina.  S/he was floating, barnacle covered and lethargic.  The shell is in a extreme state of degradation.
THE TREATMENT: The sea turtle was transported to the Sea Island Veterinary Clinic.  Under the kind attention of Dr. Ann Beck this turtle received fluids and medication.  Blood panels and x-rays were also ordered  The shell was very carefully washed with a betadine solution and then rinsed.
Five days after the rescue the sea turtle was driven to the KBSTRRC.  Thanks to Charlotte Hope, a biologist with the endangered species program of the South Carolina Dept of Natural Resources, for a safe delivery.

Once at the KBSTRRC the shell received further attention.  The shell was again washed with betadine.  Each barnacle or cluster of barnacles was painstakingly removed so that the minimum amount of keratin was disturbed.  A large amount of the keratin, which is the substance that covers the bone, had already fallen off.

THE PROGNOSIS: The cause of the shell degradation is unknown at this time.  The PCV is 13 but he is eating on his own.
UPDATE 12/15/98: This sea turtle is coming along beautifully.  The carapace continues to heal as we continue the betadine solution scrubs.
UPDATE 6/23/99: Dr. Lewbart and a select group of students from the NC State University College of Veterinary Medicine spent a day examining all turtles in residence.  After an external examination and a blood draw Huntington was declared fit for release.
On 6/23/99, along with four others,  Huntington was released onto Topsail Beach where he crawled to the sea. But before disappearing, he turned back slightly and there are some who say they heard "Be sure to thank Charlotte for the lift".
Huntington's exam 6/2/99
Huntington gets final once over by Vets...
...and tagged in prepartion of release      
On his way to freedom
in front of many fans






7/1/99