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Clearwater Marine Aquarium releases 4 rehabilitated sea turtles at Fred Howard Park beach

After receiving treatment for infections, red tide exposure and surgery, the four turtles were cleared for release.

TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. — Four sea turtles were released back into the water at Fred Howard Park beach Wednesday after being rehabilitated at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium.

The sea turtles, Rupert, Vernon, Alexis Rose and Chandler, all arrived at the aquarium needing help. 

Let's meet the four sea turtles that made it back in the water safely:

Credit: Clearwater Marine Aquarium
Clearwater Marine Aquarium rehabilitated sea turtle Rupert

Rupert, a young green sea turtle was found on Feb. 11 floating around near Anclote Key, Florida. He was given antibiotics for an infection. Rupert gained 2 pounds during his time at the aquarium. 

Credit: Clearwater Marine Aquarium
Clearwater Marine Aquarium rehabilitated sea turtle Vernon

Young Kemp's ridley sea turtle Vernon was caught by a fisherman near St. Pete Beach on June 21. It was confirmed that he swallowed a hook and needed surgery to remove it. 

The surgery was successful and the incision healed.

Credit: Clearwater Marine Aquarium
Clearwater Marine Aquarium rehabilitated sea turtle Alexis Rose

Alexis Rose, another young Kemp's ridley turtle, was found near Madeira Beach on July 22. She was showing symptoms indicating exposure to red tide, which was later confirmed by the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWRI). 

Alexis Rose went through treatment that helped flush the toxin out of her system.

Credit: Clearwater Marine Aquarium
Clearwater Marine Aquarium rehabilitated sea turtle Chandler

Chandler, a sub-adult Kemp's ridley, was found near Bellaire Beach on Aug. 1. 

Just like Alexis Rose, he was also showing signs of red tide exposure. After FWRI confirmed it was red tide poisoning, fluids and IV nutrition were given to Chandler. 

After their time in rehabilitation, Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s veterinarian and Florida Fish and Wildlife cleared the four sea turtles for release. 

The green and Kemp's ridley sea turtles are among the most endangered species of turtle, according to the FWC. Wildlife experts say the Kemp's ridley is the rarest sea turtle in the world, with only one major nesting site on Mexico's coast.

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