Newly released drone footage captured the moment a green sea turtle was released back into the wild after being found stranded on an Australian beach the day before St Patrick’s Day.
The female turtle, estimated to be 35 years old and aptly named Paddy, spent two weeks recuperating at Adelaide Zoo, before being released into the ocean on March 31, the zoo said.
Drone footage provided by the RSPCA shows rescuers setting Paddy free in Rapid Bay.
“With no sign of injury or long-term illness, the teams involved decided it was time to release Paddy, choosing a release site of Rapid Bay for its protected nature, currents and warmer waters,” the zoo said.
In a statement, the zoo’s animal hospital manager Di Hakof said the turtle “swam straight away.”
“We kept following her up the beach, and then she got her bearings and started swimming out,” Hakof said. “It was amazing to see and to be there and to share it with some locals.”
Hakof said they hope to track Paddy by satellite.
“As a 35-year-old female, she’s coming up to or has just completed her first laying and breeding season so it will be important for us to be able to watch her movements,” she said.
Credit: Adelaide Zoo/RSPCA via Storyful