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Monday, October 17, 2016

From the News: Hurricane Matthew and Sea Turtles

A sea turtle from the Georgia coast floats in a tank at the Georgia Aquarium. The aquarium is tending to turtles brought to the aquarium from the Georgia Sea Turtle Center on Jekyll Island last weekend. The Jekyll Island facility was evacuated as both staff and turtles escaped the threat of Hurricane Matthew. Photo: courtesy Georgia Aquarium

Earlier this month, the zoo and aquarium community was watching with bated breath as Hurricane Matthew bore down on the Florida coast.  Naturally, most of our collective attention was focused on zoos - the staff, the animals, and the facilities - that were in the path of the storm.  Thankfully, the damage was relatively minimal, especially considering what might have been.

A nice reminder in the news today - not all of the animal victims of the storm are zoo animals or pets.  Wild animals are impacted as well.  Among other news items, I saw that hundreds of sea turtle nests were destroyed by the storm, while many baby turtles were thrown ashore, weak and confused.  It's fantastic to see that, even as they clean up their own storm damage, zoos and aquariums throughout the south are still chipping in to help save as many of the affected sea turtles as possible.

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