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MARATHON (CBSMiami) — American Airlines provided a free ride to Miami on Saturday for an injured turtle.

The endangered female hawksbill sea turtle, laden with eggs, had arrived at the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital after being flown from the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The 123-pound reptile was found in stable condition Saturday on a St. Croix beach and later rescued.

Virgin Islands fish and wildlife officials believe the turtle was most likely washed ashore by Tropical Storm Isaac.

The turtle has deep wounds on both shoulders that may have been caused by a fisherman. It also seems as if the turtle was repeatedly gaffed to remove the fishing gear, according to officials.

Hospital staff said they will treat the wounds and check for fishing gear that may have been ingested by the turtle.

Click Here for the Turtle Hospital’s website.

The Florida Keys News Bureau contributed to this report.


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