By: Ann Kunz
On Saturday night the 27th December just before midnight we received a call regarding an injured loggerhead turtle at Sodwana Bay in northern KZN. According to the information we received, the adult turtle had been seen by the turtle tour guides earlier that evening in the surf zone. When the guides returned from their tour the tide had receded and they realized that both her front flippers were missing
As her wounds were not bleeding too heavily and she appeared otherwise in good condition we felt she had a strong chance of survival and the decision was made to transport her immediately to uShaka Sea World.
No-one will ever know how she sustained her injuries and although her wounds were severe, she was strong, healthy and reacted well to stimulus. It appeared as though her injuries had occurred separately from one another and that the most recent was a few days old. It did not appear that all her injuries had been naturally sustained.
Normally when an animal sustains such severe injuries their chances of survival are slim but this lady proved the exception. Her name is Keena which means brave and she certainly is a brave lady who we are cautiously optimistic will survive the next few crucial weeks before beginning physiotherapy.
Although she will never be able to return to the ocean (turtles without the use of both front flippers are unable to avoid predation or reach the necessary ocean depths to adequately feed), she will always have a home with us.
We know her recovery and rehabilitation will be a long journey but for now we are just taking it one day at a time.
A huge thank you to everyone who assisted in the rescue and transportation of Keena to Durban.
We will keep you updated on her progress.