In recent weeks, Blijdorp has taken in six sea turtles. The animals were stranded or found in a fishing net. Unfortunately, one of them passed away. Currently, the rest are recuperating in the Quarantine of the Oceanium. The goal is to release the five back into their natural habitat next year.
In the early hours of October 19, the first sea turtle arrived at the zoo. The animal was found by fishermen near Walcheren and was named Boeier, after the ship on which it was found. Boeier is a Kemp's Ridley sea turtle, a critically endangered species that normally only lives around the Gulf of Mexico. After Boeier, Kemp's turtle Bløf also arrived, found by a beachgoer in Zoutelande. Unfortunately, she did not survive.
Just before the holidays, it was literally and figuratively stormy at our clinic. In four days, four loggerhead turtles washed up on the Dutch beaches. Severely hypothermic, the little creatures arrived at Diergaarde Blijdorp, where they received a first check-up. After making X-rays, drawing blood, and administering calcium, among other treatments, the turtles were placed in our marine quarantine. Here they were gradually warmed to a temperature of around 20 degrees. Each day, one of them moved to the larger basin. Currently, the four loggerhead turtles are swimming together, and they are doing well under the circumstances.
Interestingly, two of the loggerheads were covered with a thick layer of barnacles. These have been expertly removed. The barnacles, weighing 800 grams and 1600 grams, have been placed in an aquarium and are also doing excellently. Some of the barnacles have been sent to VU University for research.