Sea turtle rescued in Myrtle Beach - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Sea turtle rescued in Myrtle Beach

Barnacle Bob | Ocean Watersports Barnacle Bob | Ocean Watersports
Barnacle Betty | Linda Mataya Barnacle Betty | Linda Mataya
Upon arrival at the Sea Turtle Hospital, experts listen to the turtle's heart | Linda Mataya Upon arrival at the Sea Turtle Hospital, experts listen to the turtle's heart | Linda Mataya
Experts draw blood from the turtle for research | Linda Mataya Experts draw blood from the turtle for research | Linda Mataya

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A sea turtle has been taken to the Sea Turtle Hospital in Charleston after barnacles began growing on its body.

The parasailing company in Myrtle Beach, Ocean Watersports, said it found the turtle in the surf. “It was sick and covered with barnacles,” said the post on Facebook. “We called him Barnacle Bob.”

But "Barnacle Bob" soon was renamed "Barnacle Betty." The North Myrtle Beach Sea Turtle Patrol was called to rescue the turtle.

Linda Mataya said the animal is too young to identify its gender. She works with the patrol and said normally when sea turtles get barnacles it is an indication that the animal is sick or injured.

“[The turtles] get the barnacles because they slow down, giving the barnacles opportunity to attach and grow,” Mataya added.

In an email, Mataya wrote the following:

Barnacles are not the typical barnacles found on a sick sea turtle. Usually, very sick turtles have barnacles covering soft tissue, head, flippers. This turtle has "white" barnacles covering her carapace but very few on soft tissue. Barnacles were rubbing on her front flippers as she swam, resulting in sore, sharp barnacles must have made swimming very painful (White area at top of front flipper)

The guys at the Ocean Watersports deserve lots of thanks....they could have just ignored her. 

Copyright 2015 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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