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Rehabilitated green sea turtle released off Florida Keys

July 20, 2019
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In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, applies Vaseline to "St. Thomas,"  a rehabilitated juvenile green sea turtle, Friday, July 19, 2019, at the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital in Marathon, Fla. At left is Dan Evans of the Sea Turtle Conservancy. The reptile was subsequently released in the Atlantic Ocean off the Keys. Fitted with a satellite tracking transmitter, the turtle is part of the "Tour de Turtles," a program that features online tracking of 16 sea turtles that have been or will be released off Florida and in the Caribbean. (Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)
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In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, applies Vaseline to "St. Thomas,"  a rehabilitated juvenile green sea turtle, Friday, July 19, 2019, at the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital in Marathon, Fla. At left is Dan Evans of the Sea Turtle Conservancy. The reptile was subsequently released in the Atlantic Ocean off the Keys. Fitted with a satellite tracking transmitter, the turtle is part of the "Tour de Turtles," a program that features online tracking of 16 sea turtles that have been or will be released off Florida and in the Caribbean. (Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)

MARATHON, Fla. (AP) — A rehabilitated green sea turtle has been fitted with a satellite tracking transmitter and released back into the waters off the Florida Keys.

The turtle named “St. Thomas” was released Friday after being treated at the Turtle Hospital in Marathon, Florida. The reptile was found last October covered in cauliflower-like tumor growths that develop as a result of a herpes-like virus affecting many sea turtles around the world. The tumors were surgically removed.

The reptile is to join a three-month-long race that monitors online the progress of 16 sea turtles.

The Tour de Turtles is organized by the Sea Turtle Conservancy, and it follows the long-distance migration of several different species of sea turtles. The turtle covering the most distance is to be declared the winner.

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