Dozens of Rescued Baby Sea Turtles Get Sponge Baths and Hand Feedings

According to the Brevard Zoo, turtles that are washed ashore, known as "washbacks," could have died on the beach if they weren't rescued.

Twenty-six baby turtles rescued after washing ashore are enjoying the full spa treatment at a Florida zoo, including sponge baths, and hand feedings.

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The turtles, who are less than a month old, are known as "washbacks."

Andrea Hill of the Brevard Zoo in Melbourne explained that after baby sea turtles hatch on the beach, they make their way into the ocean. Once there, they protect themselves from predators by hiding in seaweed.

"Sometimes, storm and high tides this time of year cause the seaweed to be pushed onto the beach," Hill told, "[bringing] the young sea turtles along with it."

Luckily, Sea Turtle Preservation Society's volunteers were there to intercept. They rescued the washbacks and transported the baby turtles to the Brevard Zoo.

"They can die," Hill said. "They are often tired and hungry, so if not found, they may not necessarily survive."

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But the turtles are now handfed shrimp and given daily brushings -- all in an effort to rehabilitate them -- and they will soon be able to be released back into the wild.

"So far, so good," Hill said of the rescue effort.

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