A shell of a trip: Sea turtle flown from Florida to South Padre Island

Local News

In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, staff from the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital place a large loggerhead sea turtle into a shipping crate Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021, in Marathon, Fla. Named Matthew, after the person who found the 230-pound reptile, the turtle was flown by private aircraft to a public care facility in South Padre Island, Texas, because it can’t be released due to a syndrome that prohibits the animal from diving for food.The flight was arranged by the organization “Turtles Fly Too,” a nonprofit that engages general aviation pilots who donate their aircraft, fuel and time to provide emergency transportation. (Steve Panariello/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP).

MARATHON, Fla. (AP) — A large loggerhead sea turtle rehabilitated at the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital has a new home in Texas.

The turtle was flown by private plane Sunday to live at a conservation facility on South Padre Island, Texas.

The 230-pound female turtle took the nearly five-hour flight from the Middle Keys to Texas with the help of “Turtles Fly Too,” a nonprofit group that works with general aviation pilots who donate their aircraft, fuel and time to provide emergency transport for endangered species.

The turtle suffered injuries to her shell in May 2020 from a boat strike that left her unable to dive and forage for food.

The Sea Turtle, Inc announced on their Facebook page the name of the loggerhead sea turtle to be Poppy.

They are inviting the public to go out and visit Poppy at her new home.

To learn more about Poppy and the Sea Turtle, Inc rescue efforts, click here.

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