COLLIER COUNTY — Sea turtles rescued from the BP oil spill in the northern Gulf of Mexico are on their way to Collier County this morning for a release in the Ten Thousand Islands.
The turtles, 34 Kemp's ridley and 3 green, were headed to the Calusa Island Marina in Goodland to be loaded onto boats for the release southeast of Marco Island.
Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Sea World and Disney have been caring for the turtles since they were cleaned of oil at primary rehabilitation centers in other parts of the Gulf coast.
Wildlife officials released 28 sea turtles in the Ten Thousand Islands in September and released another 42 sea turtles in the same area in August.
The Ten Thousand Islands is one of a handful of release sites in Florida that are considered safe from the effects of the oil spill.
Research by Conservancy of Southwest Florida scientist Jeff Schmid has found that juvenile Kemp's ridleys spend part of their life feeding in the Ten Thousand Islands.