Praying Mantis's Story

Praying Mantis was rescued from Grant Valkaria, FL with propeller lacerations to her carapace. She was originally taken to Brevard Zoo's Sea Turtle Healing Center and later transferred to Gumbo Limbo Nature Center. In addition to her injuries, she is displaying buoyancy issues and lameness in her rear right flipper. Praying Mantis has a fibropapilloma tumor under her right front flipper, as well, which rarely occurs in loggerhead sea turtles.  

Close up of a Praying Mantis on the floor of the treatment room.

Loggerhead Sea Turtle
Age: Adult (~35-100 yrs)

Location: Grant Valkaria, FL
Concern: Boat Strike &

Status: Euthanized

Weight: 96.9 kg 213.6 lbs


2020-Jul-8 Veterinarian prescribed euthanisia due to health decline and discomfort. 
2020-Jul-1 Buoyancy progressively getting worse.
2020-Jun-10 Intermittent physical therapy in behind the scenes tank with weight belt.
2020-May-18 Fitted into a new, adjustable weight belt to help with her buoyancy and weigh her down. Sitting comfortably on the bottom of the tank in full water.
2020-May-1 Discontinue administration of supportive medications.
2020-Apr-3 Temporary weights affixed to back side of carapace to help with flotation issues.
2020-Apr-1 Daily diet increased. Eats all food offered. Great appetite.
2020-Mar-28 Ate six squid. Appetite is improving.
2020-Mar-21 Cleaned carapace of algae and barnacle growth.
2020-Mar-20 Begin MLS laser therapy and honey application to carapace and rear flipper wounds. 
2020-Mar-19 Praying Mantis ate squid when offered.
2020-Mar-18 Transferred to Gumbo Limbo Nature Center. Began supportive medications and completed diagnostic bloodwork and radiographs. In shallow water to support her weight. Exhibited buoyancy issues in water.
2020-Mar-17 Rescued from Grant Valkaria, FL with boat strike injuries. Taken to Brevard Zoo's Sea Turtle Healing Center. Fibropapilloma tumor found during initial examination.