The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center’s Stranding Response Program will be releasing some of their rehabilitated sea turtles back into the wild this Wednesday.
Four turtles will be released: two loggerhead sea turtles and two Kemp’s ridley sea turtles.
These species are two of the most common to live in the coastal waters around Hampton Roads.
The four turtles being released have been named Green Apple, Dahlia, Snapdragon and Rose. The release will be viewable by the public and is taking place Wednesday, June 20 at 9 a.m. behind the 31st Street Neptune’s Park at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.
This will be the second release for Green Apple by the center, who was released late 2017 and then hooked a second time at the Ocean View Fishing Pier on June 13. Green Apple now has a satellite tag so the center can study feeding habits around fishing piers. You can follow the turtle’s tracking patterns at seaturtle.org.
All four of the turtles being released came to the Virginia Marine Animal Care Center after being hooked by recreational fishers near fishing piers.
The Stranding and Response Team would like all fishers to know that anyone who hooks a sea turtle should not attempt to unhook the turtle themselves and that they should call the 24-hour hotline at 757-385-7575 as soon as possible. The turtle should be brought ashore using a net, leave at least two feet of line attached to the turtle, and place it in a shady spot while waiting for The Stranding and Response Team to arrive.