Internships underway at Turtle Hospital

Published: Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 01:30 PM.

Greens for our greens

The new hospital means that we have more time to focus on ways to improve and enhance our rehabilitation processes. This year we have revised our diet plan for our small greens, who eat pretty much an all vegetarian diet beginning at a fairly young age in the wild. Once a patient is on the road to recovery we move them from a protein-based breakfast of fish and squid to a salad bar. Dumping mixed veggies into a tank of water is not optimal, as they soon become mushy and unappetizing. After a brainstorming session Jessie constructed a prototype serving tray of sorts, built from plastic lattice and PVC pipe that was loaded with sand and sealed. The openings in the lattice allow us to shove in a head of romaine lettuce (one of their favorite foods) and then let the whole thing sink to the bottom. We tested it on “Lil Louisiana” who gave it a good work-out, followed by a flippers-up approval. The picture is worth a thousand words.

Hospital visiting hours

We are open daily (except Wednesday and Sunday) from noon to 4 p.m. General admission is $5, adults; $4 seniors and military; and $3 for children. We are located at 302 Tortuga Lane, on the Surf City mainland. Take the turn from N.C. 50/210 onto Charlie Medlin Drive (Shipwreck Point Mini Golf is your landmark for this road.) Follow the road onto the gravel section and through the round-about. We are the only building on Tortuga.

Visit our website ( and/or our Facebook page (The Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue & Rehabilitation Center) for updates on patients and other turtle happenings.

Nesting has started

Although we have many Topsail Turtle Project flip-flops on the sand every morning through the end of August, we still rely heavily on our locals and visitors to report any sighting of nesting turtles, as well as any turtles in any kind of distress. Please report all local sea turtle activity to Director of Beach Operations Terry Meyer at 910-470-2880. If unable to reach her you may also contact Director Jean Beasley at 910-470-2800. The state of N.C. also has a hotline for strandings (injured or sick turtles): 252-241-7367 and the call will be picked up 24/7.

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