MANTEO, N.C. — More cold-stunned sea turtles are being treated at the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island after a drop in temperatures on Thursday and Friday.
Aquarium officials said 96 turtles had been taken from the Buxton staging site operated by the Network for Endangered Sea Turtles to the aquarium's Sea Turtle Assistance and Rehabilitation Center.
More sea turtles are expected to be treated at the center in the next few days.
Cold-stunning is a condition which is similar to hypothermia and is caused by dropping water temperatures.
The condition makes the turtles unable to swim properly.
The majority of the turtles arriving at the aquarium are green sea turtles but there a few loggerheads as well, Public Relations Coordinator Brian Postelle said.
The recovery process begins by gradually warming the turtles back up over the course of a few days.
To make sure there is room for the new patients, the center will be closed to the public beginning Sunday, Dec. 22.
"As we move the turtles around into warmer areas, we'll need the public spaces in the STAR Center to make them all as comfortable as we can," said Assistant Husbandry Curator Elizabeth Huber.
"It also gives staff and volunteers room to work and check up on our patients."
Additional supplies are needed in anticipation of more turtles arriving for treatment.
Items can be purchased from the STAR Center’s Amazon.com wish list to help staff care for current and incoming patients.