Nilukshi Rescue Turtle

female Olive Ridley turtle (RB.LO.211), admitted 13 April 2020, Maamunagau, Raa Atoll, Maldives

Weight / Length: 12.5 kg / 47.5 cm (on admission);


This female Olive Ridley turtle was found floating on the ocean surface close to Maamunagau Resort, Raa Atoll.

Nilukshi was admitted to our Turtle Rehabilitation Centre with symptoms of mild dehydration and abrasions on the carapace. Sadly, she’s missing her left front flipper from an old injury (probably from net entanglement) and suffers from turtle buoyancy syndrome (unable to dive below the water surface).

Nilukshi was cleaned, treated with fluids and given a freshwater bath for rehydration. She is being prescribed a course of antibiotics, to treat the probable lung infection that is causing her to be buoyant. 

Conna stranded Hawksbill turtle Maldives
Conna stranded Hawksbill turtle Maldives

May Updates

Nilukshi finished her antibiotic treatment this month and her wounds are healing nicely, but her buoyancy syndrome persists and she is unable to dive below the water surface (and so is not yet fit for release).

June Updates

Nilukshi’s carapace ulcers are healing, and she is receiving weekly debriding and antiseptic treatments. She is making serious efforts to dive down below the water surface during feeding times, and we are encouraging this behaviour to help with the buoyancy syndrome.

July Updates

Nilukshi made great progress this month! Her wounds are now healed and she’s finished all her treatments. She has an excellent appetite and she recently got to enjoy some fish ‘ice-popsicles’ as enrichment.
On her daily exercises, she has got better and better at recovering food from the bottom of the pool. On 25 July, she was transferred to the ocean enclosure to practice her swimming and diving in a much larger rehabilitation environment. Here, she started to dive deeper every day, and not floating to the surface when she stops swimming. As soon as she is able to rest on the bottom of the cage, she will be ready to go back to the ocean where she belongs.

Nilukshi Olive Ridley rescue turtle Maldives fish popsicle

11 August … Release Day!

After almost 4 months of care and rehabilitation at our turtle rescue centre, Nilukshi is finally able to dive and rest on the bottom of her enclosure.
On 11 August, she was successfully released from the beach, with a small gathering of guests and staff to wave her on her journey. Bon voyage, Nilukshi. 💙 🙂

Nilukshi Olive Ridley rescue turtle Maldives release