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SF Zoo Aids Heroic Sea Turtle Rescue in Freezing Texas

Thousands of cold-stunned sea turtles are now warming up thanks to some Bay Area help
By - posted 2/23/2021 No Comment

Thank you to the San Francisco Zoo for lending a hand to help the rescue efforts to save thousands of cold-stunned sea turtles affected by the recent frigid storms in Texas.

As Texans endure the devastating conditions brought on by loss of power amid frigid temperatures, a mass casualty to the weather anomaly are sea turtles that live along the Texas coast. Thousands of “cold-stunned” sea turtles have been rescued from freezing waters since the onset of the storms for life-saving rehabilitation at area wildlife centers and aquariums.

Today, San Francisco Zoo & Gardens has pledged its support of this heroic sea turtle rescue and additional support of the Association of Zoo & Aquariums’ Employee Relief Fund, to aide those employees that work in zoos and aquariums affected by this terrifying winter storm.

“The images of the hundreds of cold-stunned sea turtles lying motionless was such an unreal sight, and we felt we needed to do something to support the incredible efforts being made by the Sea Turtle, Inc. organization and others,” said Tanya M. Peterson, CEO and Executive Director of San Francisco Zoological Society. “Fortunately, through the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), a coordinated effort was established to enable us to help.”

AZA is hoping to raise at least $50,000 to support what is likely the largest sea turtle cold stunning event in Texas history. AZA’s SAFE program (Saving Animals From Extinction), has designated 21 species to save from extinction, among these are sea turtles, some species of which are considered critically endangered.

Since sea turtles are cold-blooded and not able to regulate their body temperature, a weather event like this causes them to lose their ability to move, though they are awake. The result can be fatal as they can drown. The hope is that their body temperatures normalize for their eventual return to the wild.

 You can help support the sea turtle rescue efforts through AZA.

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