“Changing Seas Bring ‘Turtle Stranding Season’ to Cape Cod”

“ORLEANS, Mass. — The Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, among the rarest and most endangered of the seven species of sea turtles, was found motionless shortly after high tide on Cape Cod’s Skaket Beach. It was in dire straits.

The chilly fall ocean temperatures off Cape Cod had dangerously dropped its body temperature, creating a hypothermia-like condition called cold-stunning. The cold water had slowed the animal’s heart rate, making it lethargic and incapable of swimming back to warmer waters.

Bob Prescott, a former director of the Mass Audubon Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, carefully scooped up the creature, soon to be designated No. 112, to try to save its life.”

Kendra Pierre-Louis reports for the New York Times December 19, 2019.