It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that Florida is a breeding ground for sea turtles given that 18.5% of the state is made up of warm water. In fact, five of the seven species are found here. However, with that comes a lot of danger for our hardback friends.
This is where the Turtle Hospital steps in.
Located in Marathon, Florida Keys, the mint green building is home to dozens of these poorly reptiles. The charity’s motto is to Rescue, Rehabilitate and Release, so they have round the clock care from specialists and surgeons, with an onsite surgery and emergency room.
Since it opened in 1986 they have treated and released over 3000 turtles. But the site actually began as a hotel. The owner decided to turn his pool into a little aquarium for homing turtles. But as they are a protected species, he needed to prove it was a certified rehabilitation project and so the non-profit hospital was born.
Educating the public
Not only does The Turtle Hospital give the best care for their residents, they also educate the public. We booked onto one of their incredibly popular tours and I can not stress enough that you need to to email for a reservation or you will not get in.
In around 90 mins, we learned about the turtles they home as well as explored the turtle tanks and hospital. The guide explained the injuries and illnesses the turtles suffer from such as impact wounds, infections and tumours.
It’s incredibly sad to hear that humans can cause so much harm, especially when it comes to plastics, which animals harmfully ingest. We need to do better and I have taken lots of steps in the last few months to change my plastic habits – here’s some simple tips from Greenpeace.
The Turtle Hospital is a truly inspirational place that really benefits from tour bookings, shop purchases, membership, adoptions and donations so please do support!
If you are in Miami or The Keys area, and you love animals, you have to visit The Turtle Hospital in Marathon. It will warm your heart and educate your mind.
Find out even more about the great work they do, how you can help and reserve a tour slot for $25 HERE
Want more Florida content? Here’s when I went kayaking with Manatees