October 11, 2022, was a bittersweet day for the Martin County School District and the Environmental Studies Center (ESC), as Shelby, the loggerhead sea turtle, was released into the Atlantic Ocean.
Shelby, who is now three years old, has resided at the District’s one-of-a-kind Environmental Studies Center since she was a three-month-old hatchling! Shelby has provided hundreds of Martin County students with first-hand knowledge of her species as she happily swam around her tank each day.
According to state law, Shelby had to be released once her top shell, the carapace, reached 45 centimeters. Before being released, Shelby was checked by the veterinarian (in great health!) and was tagged. ESC staff also had to ensure the weather and water conditions were right before releasing Shelby.
The Martin County School District and Environmental Studies Center wish Shelby all the best and hope to see her again when she lays her own eggs in 17-18 years!
The Center recently welcomed a three-month-old female hatchling that will be named by our kindergarten students! Families can meet the hatchling and Joey the Alligator on during the ESC's Open House on October 22 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.