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MARATHON, Florida Keys (CBSMiami/FKNB) — A sub-adult loggerhead sea turtle is home for the holidays, returned to the ocean Christmas Eve off Marathon’s Sombrero Beach in the Florida Keys.
After convalescing nearly three months at the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital, Casper, the more-than-100-pound female was released Saturday by Turtle Hospital staff and the family members who helped rescue it in October.
Turtle Hospital had diagnosed the reptile with a severe intestinal impaction. Treatment included antibiotics, vitamins and a healthy diet of squid supplemented with Lactulose, a synthetic sugar laxative used for constipation.
When the Turtle Hospital opened in September of 1986 it was the world’s first state-licensed veterinary sea turtle hospital. The facility remains the only one of its kind in the world, even equipped with three “turtle ambulances” for patient transport.
The hospital has treated and rehabilitated more than 1,500 injured sea turtles and assisted scores of hatchlings gone astray after exiting their nests.
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