Times are scary for everyone right now, but especially for sea turtles.
The Kemp’s Ridley turtle in particular is the most critically endangered sea turtle in the world, according to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Commonly found in Texas and Mexico, they only reach about two feet in length and 80 to 100 pounds max, making them the smallest of the sea turtles.
Can you imagine the trouble you could get into if you were that small?
Some much-needed relief is coming their way, however, as Texas A&M University at Galveston is slated to open a new short-term hospital for the turtles later in the fall.
NO PICTURES PLEASE: Please refrain from taking selfies with the sea turtles. It’s illegal, TIRN says
A collaboration between the university’s Gulf Center for Sea Turtle Research and the Houston Zoo, the space will provide rehabilitation efforts and veterinary needs for the hospital’s patients.
“People love sea turtles and want to see turtles be healthy. We also want to know what’s going on in the sea turtle population,” Department of Marine Biology Professor and GCSTR Director Dr. Christopher Marshall told the Galveston County Daily News, as reported by KHOU-TV.
Texas A&M also plans to add a long-term educational outreach facility and sea turtle hospital in the next several years, Marshall told Southern Living.
With the long-term facility, the public will get a chance to see adorable sea turtles from the local region up close and “learn about the marine habitats of Galveston Bay, the upper Texas coast and the western Gulf of Mexico that support sea turtles.”