Rescued sea turtles released back into the wild in Israel

MIHMORET, Israel — Over a dozen endangered sea turtles rescued after suffering serious injuries in the Mediterranean Sea scurried across a beach in Israel on Friday after months of medical attention.

The 15 loggerhead turtles and two green sea turtles have been released back into the wild after months of rehabilitation at the Sea Turtle Rescue Center in central Israel. Each had been taken to the Israel Nature and Parks Authority facility over the winter and suffered various types of physical trauma, likely caused by underwater explosives.

The sea turtle species are listed as threatened or endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and are protected under Israeli law.

The seafaring reptiles received months of intensive care at the facility north of Tel Aviv on the Mediterranean coast, beginning with antibiotics and fluids.

Yaniv Levy, a sea turtle ecologist who heads the center, said that before releasing the turtles, the biologists made sure “that we’re making no mistake and returning the turtle to the wild 100% healthy.”

After cleaning, measuring and weighing them, the scientists stuck satellite tags on the shells of several individuals so they can monitor the turtles’ location and further study their behavior in the wild. Rescued sea turtles released back into the wild in Israel

Dustin Huang

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