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In the morning on May 21st, 2020, a massive 800-pound leatherback sea turtle was spotted laying eggs on Melbourne Beach in Indialantic, Florida.
SGGT Tim Weber from the Indialantic Police Department said they received a call at 6:39am and they sent three officers down to investigate the situation. As the officers arrived on the scene, they found many fascinated beachgoers were gathered around the turtle, watching it and taking pictures.
The massive leatherback was right off the boardwalk by Fifth Avenue and had a Loggerhead Marinelife Center metal identification tag on her left rear flipper dating back to March 2016. This was her fourth reported sighting and the name on her tag said Vienna. She reportedly finished laying her eggs and returned back to the ocean one hour after sunrise.
Jimmy Golian, a wildlife photographer who was there told Florida Today, “It was a shock. You walked down from the boardwalk, and it was right there. It was just massive. I’ve seen a lot of green turtles, and I’ve seen loggerheads but, that one, I just couldn’t believe the size of it.”
Leatherback sea turtles are capable of descending more than 3,000 feet and can travel farther than any other sea turtle species. They are the world’s largest turtles growing 6 feet long and weighing 500 to 1,500 pounds. Take a look at how big she is in the video below.
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