Turtle returned to ocean after recovering from spear attack

November 1, 2019 GMT
In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, manager of the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital, and spectators watch as "Splinter," a federally protected green sea turtle, crawls to the Atlantic Ocean Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in Key West, Fla. The 150-pound reptile was rescued off Key Largo, Fla., Sept. 7, 2019, with a spear shot into its neck and was transported to the hospital where a veterinarian surgically removed it. (Rob O'Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)
In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, manager of the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital, and spectators watch as "Splinter," a federally protected green sea turtle, crawls to the Atlantic Ocean Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in Key West, Fla. The 150-pound reptile was rescued off Key Largo, Fla., Sept. 7, 2019, with a spear shot into its neck and was transported to the hospital where a veterinarian surgically removed it. (Rob O'Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)
In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, manager of the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital, and spectators watch as "Splinter," a federally protected green sea turtle, crawls to the Atlantic Ocean Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in Key West, Fla. The 150-pound reptile was rescued off Key Largo, Fla., Sept. 7, 2019, with a spear shot into its neck and was transported to the hospital where a veterinarian surgically removed it. (Rob O'Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)
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In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, manager of the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital, and spectators watch as "Splinter," a federally protected green sea turtle, crawls to the Atlantic Ocean Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in Key West, Fla. The 150-pound reptile was rescued off Key Largo, Fla., Sept. 7, 2019, with a spear shot into its neck and was transported to the hospital where a veterinarian surgically removed it. (Rob O'Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)
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In this photo provided by the Florida Keys News Bureau, Bette Zirkelbach, right, manager of the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital, and spectators watch as "Splinter," a federally protected green sea turtle, crawls to the Atlantic Ocean Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in Key West, Fla. The 150-pound reptile was rescued off Key Largo, Fla., Sept. 7, 2019, with a spear shot into its neck and was transported to the hospital where a veterinarian surgically removed it. (Rob O'Neal/Florida Keys News Bureau via AP)

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) — A federally protected green sea turtle was released in the Florida Keys after recovering from a spear shot into its neck.

The 150-pound (68-kilogram) female, dubbed “Splinter,” returned to the Atlantic Ocean on Friday at Higgs Beach in Key West.

The turtle was rescued off Key Largo Sept. 7 entangled in a commercial fishing trapline. The reptile was transported to the Middle Keys-based Turtle Hospital in Marathon, where a veterinarian surgically removed the 3-foot-long (1-meter-long) spear.

Hospital personnel also provided additional treatment, which included wound care, broad-spectrum antibiotics and a diet of natural sea grass, green vegetables and seafood.

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Several Florida Keys businesses have joined with the hospital to pledge a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever speared the turtle.