MELBOURNE (CBSMiami) — Brevard Zoo’s Sea Turtle Healing Center is caring for nearly 300 green and loggerhead sea turtle “washbacks” pushed ashore when Hurricane Leslie disrupted their habitat.READ MORE: Broward Schools Planning 100 Percent In-Person Instruction In The Fall
“When sea turtles hatch, they rely on energy stores from a yolk sac to make the multi-mile swim to offshore weed lines—floating masses of Sargassum seaweed that provide shelter and food,” explained sea turtle program manager Shanon Gann. “If the seaweed is disrupted by a storm or strong winds that wash them back to shore, the little turtles do not have the energy to make the long swim again.”READ MORE: Police: Search On For Man Caught On Camera Burglarizing Vehicle In Pembroke Pines
Healing Center staff and volunteers are caring for the washbacks for a few days until open ocean conditions improve; at that time, they will be transported offshore in a boat and placed in weed lines.
Sea Turtle Preservation Society (STPS) volunteers are transporting the turtles to the Healing Center. Individuals who find washbacks should immediately call STPS at 321-676-1701 or Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-3922 for rescue instructions.MORE NEWS: FBI Searched Hollywood Home, Items Removed Placed In Paper Bags
Brevard Zoo is home to more than 900 animals representing 195 species from all over the world.