Smalls was in the National Aquarium’s care for about a year as part of North Carolina Aquarium’s Loggerhead Head Start Program.
The initiative gives baby loggerhead turtles that didn’t make it from their nests to the ocean a second chance. The hatchlings are distributed to aquariums around the U.S. where they’re raised for a few months before returning to North Carolina for release.
Our latest loggerhead charge, Smalls, arrived in North Carolina earlier this week to prep for release. He was tagged, measured and fitted with a satellite tracker. Yesterday, the team headed 27 miles off shore in order to reach 73-degree water—the perfect temperature for a turtle release.
Once there, Smalls and the other loggerheads from partner institutions were released. A number of loggerhead and green sea turtle hatchlings were also sent back to the ocean!
The National Aquarium team is headed back to Baltimore, and they’re not alone. A new loggerhead hatchling is joining them on the journey and will be on exhibit at the Aquarium soon!
Stay tuned for updates on our new addition!