The Washington Post

Aquarium rescues sea turtles stranded in Massachuse­tts

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Sea turtle strandings on Cape Cod are increasing after a slow start to the season, experts at the New England Aquarium said Monday.

The aquarium has so far cared for almost 120 of the animals at its Quincy, Massachuse­tts, turtle hospital. The vast majority have been endangered Kemp’s ridley turtles. But scientists have also treated eight green turtles and two loggerhead­s.

The turtles are treated for lifethreat­ening conditions, including pneumonia and dehydratio­n, a result of days or weeks of hypothermi­a (dangerousl­y low body temperatur­e) and the inability to feed.

The turtles get trapped in Cape Cod Bay as temperatur­es drop and wind patterns change, and they quickly become hypothermi­c. The stranding season started later this year because water in the bay was warmer than usual.

The turtles are assessed and treated in Massachuse­tts, a process that can take weeks or months, before they are transferre­d to Southern states for rehabilita­tion and eventual release into an ocean.

 ?? VANESSA KAHN/NEW ENGLAND AQUARIUM/AP ?? About 120 turtles, mostly the endangered Kemp’s ridley species, were rescued from Cape Cod.
VANESSA KAHN/NEW ENGLAND AQUARIUM/AP About 120 turtles, mostly the endangered Kemp’s ridley species, were rescued from Cape Cod.

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