A project of Georgia Sea Turtle Center.
click map for full-size version
Life Stage: Sub-Adult
Release Date: 2010-10-09 00:00:00
Release Location: Jekyll Island
Last Location: 2010-11-17 07:36:09
Ghus (for Esophoghus) is a sub-adult loggerhead sea turtle who was found floating about 1 mile off of St. Augustine, Florida on June 12, 2010. Ghus was floating and unable to dive. He/she also had monofilament (fishing) line coming out of his/her mouth and cloaca. On June 15, 2010, surgery was performed to remove the fishing line from Ghus’ GI tract by Dr. Terry Norton and Dr. Jennifer Meegan (US Navy Veterinarian/Aquatic Animal Resident University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine). The surgeons made an incision into the inguinal area just in front of the hind flippers, gently pulled the intestines out to make 3 incisions (enterotomies) into the small intestine and colon. The fishing line was successfully removed. Dr. David Whitehead, a human gastroenterologist that recently performed upper and lower GI tract endoscopy on Dr. Norton assisted us by evaluating the stomach via endoscopy and found no fishing line. It was important to have this evaluation done because the surgeons could not reach this area due to the limitations of the shell. Unfortunately, Ghus also has a lung tear which continued to leak air which caused him/her to float. Luckly the tear of the lung healed on its own as many of them do so we did not have to perform a second surgery. Ghus was also not eating, thus we had to start to tube feed him. We also aspirated air from the body cavity almost every day. Ghus has recovered remarkably well from his/her ordeal and now can swim and dive like a normal turtle.