Rehabilitated loggerhead turtle released on Boca Raton beach

Peanut, an adult female loggerhead, was released Tuesday afternoon at Spanish River Park in Boca Raton by Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, which nursed the sea turtle to health. (Courtesy of Rachel Bladow, Gumbo Limbo Nature Center)

Peanut, an adult female loggerhead, was released Tuesday afternoon at Spanish River Park in Boca Raton by Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, which nursed the sea turtle to health. (Courtesy of Rachel Bladow, Gumbo Limbo Nature Center)

BOCA RATON — A rehabilitated loggerhead turtle waddled to water along Boca Raton’s shoreline on Tuesday in front of hundreds of onlookers.

“This is probably the largest crowd we’ve had,” said Caitlin Bovery, a rehabilitation coordinator at Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, which coordinated the turtle’s release.

Peanut, an adult female loggerhead that recovered t Gumbo Limbo from severe malnutrition, was released at the beach near Spanish River Park. Peanut was named after Peanut Island, at the mouth of Lake Worth Inlet, where she was found in May by Florida Fish and Wildlife officials, Bovery said.

Peanut, an adult female loggerhead, was released Tuesday afternoon at Spanish River Park in Boca Raton by Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, which nursed the sea turtle to health. (Courtesy of Rachel Bladow, Gumbo Limbo Nature Center)

Peanut, an adult female loggerhead, was released Tuesday afternoon at Spanish River Park in Boca Raton by Gumbo Limbo Nature Center, which nursed the sea turtle to health. (Courtesy of Rachel Bladow, Gumbo Limbo Nature Center)

“She was so skinny,” Bovery said. “She wasn’t even healthy enough to produce eggs.”

Gumbo Limbo’s team of rehabilitation specialists nursed Peanut back to health. She gained nearly 70 pounds before she was released.

Gumbo Limbo tagged the loggerhead with a blue satellite tag that will allow the nature center to track Peanut and learn whether she nests locally.

“It was exhilarating,” Bovery said, following the release. “We put our hearts and souls into caring for these animals and to be able to share it with the community is just incredible.”

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