Posted February 9, 2017 | Updated March 24, 2017

Triple Sea Turtle Release – Gran Torino, Han Solo & Vanilla Wafer

TRIPLE SEA TURTLE RELEASE

Juvenile, Green Sea Turtles
(Chelonia mydas)
Released: January 19, 2017
Location: Honeymoon Island


GRAN TORINO

Gran Torino green sea turtle release

One-Eyed Tumor Survivor

Gran Torino is a juvenile green sea turtle that stranded on February 17, 2016, on the northeast side of the Dunedin Causeway. She was brought to Clearwater Marine Aquarium missing her left eye, and had fibropapilloma tumors afflicting her eye lids, neck, flippers, and plastron (belly).

Gran Torino was immediately started on fluids and antibiotics, and was tube fed and given iron and amino acid supplements to ensure she was getting a nutritious diet. She was soon weened off of the tube feedings, and was eating on her own. Over the course of her stay, Gran Torino underwent a series of tumor removal laser surgeries, each of which was successful. Eye drops were administered after the removal of her eye tumors to ensure their proper healing and to stop any tumor regrowth.

Gran Torino was cleared for release by Dr. Marquardt after confirming she was tumor free. She was returned to the ocean at Honeymoon Island on Jan. 19 along with our other fully-rehabbed turtles, Vanilla Wafer and Han Solo. We wish them all the best of luck out in the big blue!


HAN SOLO

Han Solo green sea turtle release

Second Release for This Turtle Without a Tail

Han Solo is a juvenile green sea turtle that stranded on February 17, 2016, in St. Petersburg. He was found afflicted with small fibropapilloma tumors, but was also missing the rear portion of his carapace (shell) and tail which had already healed. In triage, it was discovered that Han Solo had been previously tagged – a quick search of his history revealed that Han Solo had been in rehab at CMA before!

Han was started on fluids and antibiotics, and was soon swimming in a rehab pool and eating on his own. He underwent multiple successful surgeries to remove his tumors, and was cleared for release by Dr. Marquardt. Han was returned to the ocean at Honeymoon Island together with Vanilla Wafer and Gran Torino, and we wish them all the best of luck!


VANILLA WAFER

Vanilla Wafer green sea turtle release

Shell Injured by Boat Strike

Vanilla Wafer is a juvenile green sea turtle that was found stranded on Clearwater Beach on January 24, 2016. Along with having a few small fibropapilloma tumors, Vanilla had been struck by a boat injuring three separate areas of her carapace (shell) exposing internal tissue, including her spinal cord.

She was given daily glucose checks, fluids and antibiotics. After a CT scan revealed that surgery would not be necessary, a combination of honey and Ilex with tegaderm dressings were applied to her wounds to aid in the healing process. Although she was tube fed initially, within a couple months she was able to solely eat solid food. As soon as she was strong enough, Vanilla underwent a couple rounds of pap-removal surgeries, each of which was successful. By August, Vanilla was started on cold laser therapy to further aid the natural repair of her carapace.

Once Vanilla Wafer’s carapace had fully healed, and her paps had been removed, she was cleared for release by Dr. Marquardt. She was released along with Han Solo and Gran Torino at Honeymoon Island on Jan. 19. We wish Vanilla the best as she returns home!


Watch the triple turtle release as it happened on Facebook Live

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