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A recovering green sea turtle being held by three woman who are resting it on a towel along the edge of a small pool.

Coming in from the cold: working to save a green sea turtle far from home

Imagine you are a young green sea turtle. Before the storms came and the sea became very cold, you were swimming in a warmer current. In warm water, you are a strong, graceful swimmer. Your powerful front flippers propel you through the water with the ease of a bird soaring through the air. But now you’re cold. So cold that you can’t move. You’ve been floating at the surface, too cold to swim, for many days. You’re also hungry. You can’t find food because you can’t move your flippers to swim. You float, carried helplessly in a current that is getting colder and colder, waiting for something to happen. Sharks and other predators are looking for an easy meal. And right now, you are an easy target. The storms started coming about a month ago. One after another, bringing high winds to the surface waters where you need to come up to breathe. The wind, waves and currents were strong.  You couldn’t swim away when the sea became even colder. Finally, after drifting for countless days, the waves pushed you onto a beach. There you lay, weak, starving and too cold to move.

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