On the 30th of June 2013, during the this year’s first summer research course, we found a loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) at sea. The turtle showed visible signs of exhaustion. It had difficulties diving, a lot of barnacles and external wounds on its head and carapace. Based on its body length (35 cm) we could see it was a young animal. Dr. Zlatko Golob, a veterinarian specialist, examined it at the Piran Aquarium. He removed the barnacles, hydrated it, cured the external wounds and treated the animal with antibiotics. The turtle had a bacterial infection, which caused additional gases to form in its body cavities and disabled its normal swimming behaviour. After the treatment, the turtle undertook a swimming test which was very encouraging, as the animal was able to dive again. Since the turtle is quickly recovering, we believe it can be released back to the wild very soon.
Some more pictures of the turtle can be found here.