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"Amazon" and "Joker" Head Home to the Wild Friday


What were once two very sick loggerhead sea turtles are now fully recovered and will be headed back to the wild this Friday (9/1).

The animals were nursed back to health at the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab. Lab Executive Director, Cypress Rudloe, said the turtles were in pretty bad shape when they were rescued earlier this year.

“Joker came to us on April 1st,” he recalled. “The name’s ‘Joker’ because it was an April Fool’s joke. She had tons of barnacles and algae and she was really skinny and dehydrated. The other one was Amazon. She was a little bit better, but she couldn’t swim and definitely had some buoyancy issues.”

After a long and complicated recovery, Rudloe said both turtles now weight over 100 pounds each and are ready for release. That will take place at Panacea’s Bald Point State Park this Friday afternoon at 5:00. A large and lively crowd is expected to be there to bid Joker and Amazon farewell.