Brevard Zoo to release sea turtle after surgically removing fishing line from intestines

Nephron was rescued from Port Canaveral on World Kidney Day

Nephron the green sea turtle was rescued last March in Port Canaveral. (Brevard Zoo)

MELBOURNE, Fla. – A young green sea turtle will go back to the ocean Thursday morning after five months of care, including surgery to remove fishing line from its intestines.

The Brevard Zoo will hold a sea turtle release at 10:30 a.m. at Lori Wilson Park for Nephron, a green sea turtle rescued on March 10 in Port Canaveral.

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Nephron has fishing line coming out of their mouth when they were rescued. Zoo officials say Nephron eventually passed about 150 centimeters of fishing line out of their system, but more remained.

So Nephron had to undergo surgery that involved pulling their intestines out and feeling them for the fishing line. The zoo’s animal care team removed an additional 50 centimeters of fishing line from Nephron’s intestines.

In all about 200 centimeters — roughly 6.5 feet — of fishing line wound up in Nephron’s system.

Nephron’s plight is a reminder that people who fish need to pack their fishing gear before and after use, and place unwanted fishing line in designated bins at the waterfront parks around Brevard County.

Nephron got their name because they were rescued on World Kidney Day.

About the Author:

Christie joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021.