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SoWal Guide
Staff member
Nov 15, 2004
South Walton, FL
Gulf World Marine Institute (GWMI) is releasing “Brimsley” and “Beefy”, both subadult loggerhead sea turtles back into the Gulf of Mexico Thursday morning, April 4, 2024 at 8:30 AM in front of the Carousel Supermarket at 19440 Front Beach Road, Panama City Beach, FL 32413. Please note that the Facebook event time is earlier in order to encourage attendees to arrive early. You may have to cross a shallow outfall in order to get to the specific release location on the beach based on where it currently flows in front of the Carousel parking lot. The GWMI team will be arriving early with educational gear and merchandise for sale, so make sure to come say hello!

Brimsley and Beefy were both brought into rehabilitation at GWMI after being accidentally hooked by recreational fisherman at local fishing piers. Brimsley was hooked back in October of 2023 by a family fishing from the St. Andrews State Park Fishing Pier; while the hook was able to be removed easily, the turtle had suffered recent trauma to the LFF and neck area. The veterinary team at GWMI wanted Brimsley to have time for those injuries to be monitored for healing, while providing antibiotic support to prevent infections. Brimsley’s wounds have healed up well with time, and he/she has been eating and swimming well off of antibiotics!

Beefy was more recently rescued from the Russell-Fields City Pier in March of this year. Beefy’s hook was easily removed from his/her mouth, but radiographs (X-rays) showed a swivel in the intestinal tract. To treat this, Beefy was fed cotton balls in squid; the cotton balls are fed to hopefully catch any loose gear and safely remove it from the intestines. After some time, a recheck radiograph confirmed that Beefy was swivel free! Both Brimsley and Beefy are eating and swimming well.

Gulf World Marine Institute is very grateful to Brimsley and Beefy’s rescuers, including the Russell-Fields City Pier staff, the Panama City Beach lifeguards, the fisherman, and Bay County FWC law enforcement for assisting in the rescues and transports! These loggerheads have been medically cleared by veterinary staff and has been cleared for release by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The public is invited to attend this event. Please keep in mind this event is subject to change based on weather conditions.

GWMI would like to thank everyone involved in the rescue of stranded sea turtles. If you see a stranded or deceased dolphin, whale or sea turtle, please immediately report to Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, 1-888-404-3922 or #FWC on your cell phone.

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