Sea Turtle That Was Found Covered in Barnacles Released Into the Wild

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Goodbyes are never easy, but Florida beachgoers were happy to see off Merriam the sea turtle as officials released him back into the wild.

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The Brevard Zoo released the male loggerhead sea turtle back to sea on Satellite Beach Tuesday after it was rescued several months ago.

According to zoo officials, Merriam was discovered in October floating sideways in the water with barnacles and algae covering his body.

There was also an open wound on his shell that indicated an infection, according to a statement from the zoo.

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He was brought back to the facility's Sea Turtle Healing Center where officials treated him with fluids, antibiotics, vitamins, and food and spent the rest of his time at the rescue on the mend.

Officials said the loggerhead sea turtle species are considered vulnerable, due to fishing, poaching and habitat loss.

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