Sea Turtle 'Scooter' to be released by
Museum of Discovery and Science on
Tuesday, July 22, 2003
Fort Lauderdale, July 21, 2003 –The Museum of Discovery and
Science will release “Scooter,” a two-year-old loggerhead sea
turtle, on Tuesday, July 22, 2003. “Scooter has grown to the
appropriate size and age to be released back into the wild,”
states Brian Sharpe, Life Sciences Manager at the Museum of
Discovery and Science. The sea turtle was found in the backwash
area of local hotel pool when it was just a day-old hatchling.
The hotel contacted Brian Sharpe who rescued the little
loggerhead and brought him to the Museum. Scooter served as the
Museum’s sea turtle ambassador for two years and helped educate
over 800,000 visitors about sea turtle conservation.
There are specific regulations that must be followed to ensure
the proper release and survival of a loggerhead. The turtle must
be a minimum of 45 cm. and must be able to find and catch its
own food. The area in which “Scooter” will be released is a
haven for turtles of the same size and age and is dedicated to
the protection and preservation of these endangered creatures.
The area is a 20.5 mile stretch of beach that runs from
Melbourne to Wabasso and is called the Archie Carr National
Wildlife Refuge. Congress designated this area specifically for
sea turtle preservation and it sees approximately 15,000-30,000
loggerhead nests each year, thus making it the most productive
turtle nesting area in the Western Hemisphere.
The release will be on July 22, 2003. Brian Sharpe and the
Museum’s Life Sciences department will be leaving the Museum
grounds promptly at 8:15 a.m. Media is welcome, however, anyone
who wishes to either follow the crew or shoot any footage of the
pre-release process must be at the Museum by 8:15 a.m., sharp.
It is also an option to meet at the designated release area at
noon. The meeting point will be at the south side of the
Sebastian Inlet Bridge (there are plenty of parking spaces for
media vehicles along the designated area).
The Museum just received a new loggerhead sea turtle
'ambassador' to take Scooter’s place, a yearling that was
rescued by the US Fishing and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
The year-old loggerhead has a new, safe and healthy home at the
Museum, but it needs a name! The Museum will be accepting
suggestions for a name for the sea turtle through the end of
August. The gender of the turtle is indeterminable until it is
much older so a non-gender specific name would be ideal. Folks
can come to the Museum to see the turtle, submit a name and
enter to win a great prize package.