We have had several reminders in the past few weeks of how lucky Fiona is to be alive. One of our more unpleasant duties here is to document dead turtles when they wash in. We consider it unpleasant because none of us like to see dead turtles. Yesterday we had just such a call from Singer Island. It turned out to be a large adult female loggerhead that had been hit by a boat propeller.
This is the second adult female loggerhead hit by a boat that we have had in the past two weeks. Of the ten dead turtles that we have documented locally this year, 6 of them have been boat strikes. Which brings me back to Fiona. If those prop strikes had just been a little deeper, she likely would have drowned due to a punctured lung. She’s one lucky turtle.
For those of you who are interested in learning more about sea turtle anatomy, the book by Dr. Jeanette Wyneken, The Anatomy of Sea Turtles, is available online. You can download individual chapters or the entire book by clicking here. It’s the reference we use here at the center for any anatomy questions.