From the SC Aquarium's turtle lady:
I have exciting news to share! Recent findings of DeBordieu, 320-pound adult female loggerhead of the Aquarium's Turtle Hospital since October 2007, have caused us to make some quick decisions concerning her release. DeBordieu is currently producing follicles (yolks) in preparation for the nesting season that is just around the corner. Just in the last week, she has gone into migratory mode with almost constant swimming. She is also completely refusing food. I have just learned that adult female loggerheads have a very small window of mating receptivity. Before and after the small window, the females actually repulse the males. In light of this information, it is very important that DeBordieu get released as soon as possible so that she does not miss that mating window. Mating will allow her to fertilize the follicles and ultimately lead to a productive nesting season. Current water temperatures are in a safe range, especially for an adult animal of Deb's size.
DeBordieu will be released on Saturday, May 2nd at the Isle of Palms (IOP) County Park at 10am. I hope that you will be able to join us for this release, even with the short notice. The IOP County Park parking lot opens at 9am and parking fees will apply. An extra day will be added to the hospital tour schedule this week so folks can get a chance to see Deb before the Saturday morning release (Wednesday, Thursday or Friday at 1pm). Including Deb, there are currently 9 patients in the Turtle Hospital. Tour information can be found on the Aquariums website at www.scaquarium.org.
The release will be wonderfully timed with the start of sea turtle season in South Carolina. The majority of SC barrier island light's out ordinances start May 1 and loggerhead nesting begins soon after.