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Following shark attack, Gulf Specimen Marine Lab releases healed sea turtle at Shell Point Beach

Published: Jul. 28, 2021 at 7:47 PM EDT
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WAKULLA COUNTY, Fla. (WCTV) A crowd gathered Wednesday at Shell Point Beach as the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab released Vicki the 5-year-old Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle into the Gulf.

Vicki was found by kayakers fishing off of Wakulla Beach a month ago, and Gulf Specimen nursed her back to health after a shark attack. The shark bit off part of one of the turtle’s front fins and her back fins.

Kemp’s Ridley Turtle’s are the most endangered sea turtle species. Apalachee Bay is a common place for Kemp’s Ridley’s to feed.

At the release, one gentleman, Cody Stroup, proposed to his girlfriend, Madison Payne. She, of course, said yes.

“Cause she’s always been obsessed with turtles and always talks about how much she loves them. So, figured this would probably be the perfect time to do it.” Stroup explained.

“Also, six years ago, we went to the turtle, to the Marine Lab so I could go see turtles.” Payne recalled.

If you find an injured sea turtle along the coast, you can contact the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab.

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