The South Carolina Aquarium released two sea turtles back into the ocean Wednesday morning.
Chum, a Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle, and Marlin, a Loggerhead sea turtle, were both caught on a hook and line and nursed back to health at the aquarium, according to the aquarium’s Facebook page.
Marlin, a 46-pound juvenile, was caught off Apache Pier in Myrtle Beach and was transported by the Department of Natural Resources to the aquarium on April 13, according to the aquarium’s website.
Marlin was described as lethargic and thin upon arrival, but was nursed back to health.
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Chum, a 5.9 pound juvenile, was caught in a creek in Beaufort and brought to the aquarium April 29, according to the aquarium’s website.
Doctors found a treble hook lodged in Chum’s esophagus and performed surgery to remove it.
Danielle Raube, the communications coordinator the the aquarium’s sea turtle care center, said they usually take in 25-30 turtles per year, but that the number is starting to increase.
She said Kemp’s Ridley turtles are usually more susceptible to hooks because of their size than Loggerheads, but that young Loggerheads such as Marlin are sometimes caught because of their small size.
Fishermen are encouraged to contact DNR if they hook a turtle instead of throwing them back with the hook still stuck inside them, she said.
The two turtles were released at the Isle of Palms county park in Charleston County.