A rare leatherback sea turtle weighing 500 pounds is being treated at the South Carolina Aquarium after being rescued from a remote Lowcountry island over the weekend. It took five people “crossing a swinging bridge and riding through the mud and marsh in a 4×4 truck” to rescue the turtle, according to The Post and Courier of Charleston.

The leatherback—one of the largest reptiles in the world—has since been named Yawkey by wildlife officials.


Saturday’s live rescue is the first in South Carolina’s history and maybe one of five in all of the United States, according to Jenna Cormany, a wildlife biologist with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources. Cormay told The Post and Courier,

I couldn’t think of a harder beach to get a 500-pound turtle off of…It is difficult to tell what caused him/her to strand. Leatherbacks feed primarily on jellyfish so it is very possible that plastics (such as bags that look like jellyfish) could be causing a GI issue.

Again, this is a v. rare species of turtle, so there will be no attempts to cook the world’s largest pot of turtle stew (ya sick bastard).


[via The Post and Courier]

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