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Injured turtles recovering at Jekyll
Eight new sea turtles are calling Jekyll Island home, three from Georgia and five from north Florida.

It's an unusual number of injured turtles to arrive in a short period of time, said Michelle Kaylor, rehabilitation coordinator for the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, 214 Stable Road, Jekyll Island.

"Typically this time of year, turtle strandings pick up, but it's not as common to receive three in one day or eight in five days," Kaylor said.

Weather events, like a drop in temperature causing cold hypothermic conditions, and red tides, an algal bloom that can be fatal, are the most common events that bring in waves of turtles.

"At this time we are uncertain as to why we are seeing these animals stranded and coming into the hospital," Kaylor said.

The reptiles are suffering from a variety of conditions.

"Most of them have a large amount of Epibiota - barnacles, algae, polychaete worms - on their shell," Kaylor said. "Some also have abnormal blood values."

Staff at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center has been busy assessing and treating the new arrivals.

Members of the center's husbandry department are administering supportive care that includes antibiotics and hydrating fluids.

"We hope that they all do well and recover," Kaylor said.

* Reporter Nikki Wiley writes about government, business and other local topics. Contact her at, on Facebook or at 265-8320, ext. 321.

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