Gopher tortoises play a very important role in our ecosystem here in Southwest Florida. They dig burrows for their homes, but these burrows also provide a home to over 250 other species.
This adult male gopher tortoise was admitted to the clinic from Cape Coral after it was hit by a car. The tortoise suffered large fractures along its carapace (upper shell) that will require surgery.View Patient Detail
The first few years of a green sea turtle’s life are spent floating at sea, where they feed on plankton. As they grow older, the turtles move to shallow waters along the coast, such as bays and lagoons, where they find sea grass to eat.
This juvenile green sea turtle (#18-3277) was rescued from the Sanibel Causeway by a tourist who saw it struggling in the water. It was transported to the #CROWClinic by SCCF staff where it is now receiving treatment for red tide poisoning.View Patient Detail
On May 13, E8 returned to CROW for the second time after being struck by a great horned owl that resulted in a broken leg. After 3 months of recovery and a successful rehabilitation the eaglet was released on August 13, 2016.
E8 was first brought to CROW on February 10, 2016 as a result of its leg being entangled in monofilament line. After having the line removed and spending a few days recoving, the eaglet was returned to its nest on February 12, 2016.
American bald eagle (315-543) was brought to CROW the first time on March 17, 2015 after being found on railroad tracks in North Fort Myers suffering from a broken clavicle on his left wing. After 3 months of recovery and rehabilitation, Ozzie was released on June 17, 2015 at the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam.
Ozzie was brought to CROW a second time on September 27, 2015 after he was found weak and injured in a North Fort Myers backyard most likely from a fight with another bald eagle. He arrived in critical condition, unable to stand and fighting a bacterial blood infection. Unfortunately, on September 29, 2015 Ozzie passed away as a result of his injuries.View Patient Detail
An adult eastern screech owl (16-3241) arrived at CROW from Fort Myers on October 12 with a left wing injury. It was unclear how the owl received the injury. It arrived bright and alert After radiographs identified a fractured left ulna (forearm) causing minor displacement and fractured left carpometacarpus (single fused bone between the wrist and the knuckles) show moderate displacement. Splints were placed on the injuries and physical therapy will begin early next week.
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On Saturday, October 29, an adult green sea turtle (patient # 16-3404) weighing approximately 52 pounds (sex unknown) was brought to CROW from Captiva. It arrived depressed, pale and was having increased inspiratory effort. The turtle had a single small Fibropapilloma (a common disease that causes tumors to cover a turtle’s body and impede their vision, mouth, and movement). It is believed that the sea turtle has Brevitoxicosis (red tide). Overall, the turtle is in great body condition and being provided supportive care (food, water) and being monitored closeView Patient Detail
A a male adult loggerhead sea turtle (180 lbs) was rescued by the Lee County Sheriff's Department Marine Unit after it received information that the turtle was seen floating near Cayo Costa and unable to submerge. The sea turtle is currently doing well and is very alert with no signs of neurological damage being present. It is believed to have brevitoxicosis (red tide). Release date pending.View Patient Detail
A mangrove water snake from Sanibel was brought to CROW on November 26, 2016, after it was found with a discharge coming from its mouth. The snake has been QAR (quiet, alert and responsive) with limited activity and is being provided supportive care (food and water). The patient is receiving outside time to absorb sunlight which has helped increase its activity level.View Patient Detail
An eastern indigo snake from North Captiva was brought to CROW on November 26, 2016, after it was found with several abrasions and punctures over a majority of its body. The wounds were cleaned with saline and bandages applied to affected areas. The adult male snake is approximately 7 feet in length and weighs 5.75 pounds and was pit tagged by SCCF (Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation) in 2013. The snake will continue to receive wound management until the wounds granulate in and skin sheds.View Patient Detail
An adult barred owl (16-3775) arrived at CROW from Alva, FL on December 12 after being found not moving in the middle of the road with a left eye injury.
Upon examination by CROW hospital staff, the owl was alert with mild dehydration and a retinal hemorrhage in the left eye. Medication was administered in the eye and will be checked for progress in a couple of days.View Patient Detail
A northern cardinal arrived at CROW from Sanibel on January 11 after it was found stuck in a glue trap. Glue was found on the wings and the beak covering the nares (nose opening). The glue was removed with warm canola oil. The bird is currently receiving supportive care and is expected to be released soon.View Patient Detail
A white pelican (#17-69) arrived at CROW after it was found in the mangroves at J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge unable to swim. The pelican arrived weak, unable to keep its head up and evidence of neurological issues. It will receive supportive care until a concrete diagnosis can be made.View Patient Detail
A female Kemp's Ridley was admitted to the hospital with two fishing hooks it had ingested. The veterinarians were able to surgically remove the hooks using endoscope equipment. Besides the two hooks, the turtle is in good health. She will receive supportive care until she is ready to be released.View Patient Detail
An osprey (17-137) arrived at CROW from J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge on January 21, 2017 after it was found in the water unable to fly. The osprey had a traumatic injury to the left foot with severe swelling and is receiving supportive care and pain management. Additional treatment will be based on pending test results.View Patient Detail
An orphaned juvenile river otter (17-262) arrived at CROW from Fort Lauderdale on February 7, 2017. The otter was abandoned by its mother and a reintroduction effort was unsuccessful. It will remain at CROW for a few months until it is old enough to be released.
Here is a video from WINK-TV of the otter arriving at CROW .View Patient Detail
A "fledgling" American Bald Eagle was admitted to the clinic on March 30 from Cape Coral. Radiographs show a fractured humerus of the eagle's left wing. Due to the location of the fracture, surgery is not an option. The wing will be immobilized and the eagle will recieve nutritional and supportive care as it heals.View Patient Detail
Two nestling loggerhead shrikes were admitted to the clinic after being knocked out of the nest when a car struck the tree containing the nest. Shrikes are nicknamed "the butcherbird" because they impale their food on thorns or barbed wire so it is easier for them to eat.View Patient Detail
Three hatchling red-bellied woodpeckers were admitted from Captiva after their nest was destroyed during construction. They are only a few days old and have not even opened their eyes. They have voracious appetites and require feedings every 45 minutes throughout the day. As they grow, they will be taught how to eat on their own and eventually how to fly before being able to be released.View Patient Detail
A female peninsula cooter, which is a freshwater turtle, was admitted from Cape Coral after it swallowed a fishing hook on the end of the line of a fisherman. The fisherman immediately brought the turtle to CROW so that the hook could be removed safely.
Radiographs showed the hook inside the turtle's body and the veterinarians acted quickly to remove it.View Patient Detail
A male gopher tortoise was admitted to the clinic after it was struck by a vehicle. It suffered a front leg injury with damage to two of its claws.
Something else was very peculiar about this tortoise when it arrived. It's carapace (top shell), plastron (bottom shell) and scales elsewhere on its body were discolored. Our veterinarians had not seen a case like this before. Samples of the discolored shell were sent for further testing to determine a cause.View Patient Detail
On December 2, a snail kite was admitted with severe head trauma and fractures in both of its wings. It is believed to have been hit by a car.
Snail kites are an endangered species, both federally and locally in Florida, however they are more common throughout much of South America. Snail kites are a specialized hawk and as their name suggests, they feed primarily on apple snails.View Patient Detail
A patient we rarely see at the #CROWClinic, this northern harrier was admitted after it was found seemingly disoriented. An intake exam found the harrier to be anemic with generalized weakness and dehydration. It is currently receiving fluid therapy and plenty of mice.
Northern Harriers are a hawk species that relies on hearing as well as vision to capture prey. The disk-shaped face looks and functions much like an owl’s, with stiff facial feathers helping to direct sound to the ears.View Patient Detail
Our first patient of 2018, a Florida box turtle was admitted with a partially amputated right hind leg. Veterinarians suspect the wound was caused by a predator attack.
Due to the presence of maggots in the wound, it is believed to be at least 24 hours to a few days old. The wound was flushed with sterile saline and Capstar, a treatment to rid the wound of the maggots.View Patient Detail
During the summer months many loggerhead sea turtles come ashore on Sanibel and Captiva to lay their eggs. Adults can weigh well over 200 pounds.
This loggerhead sea turtle was found floating and very debilitated. When it arrived it had large amounts of epibiota (barnacles, algae and other small organisms) on its shell.View Patient Detail
Bald eagles are one of the most iconic species in North America, with their white head and tail, and yellow beak and feet. Eagles do not acheive this look until about 5 years of age. Juveniles are dark brown/black mottled with white plummage.
This juvenile is believed to have fallen from its nest. It was observed on the ground for over 24 hours without care from the adults. It's intake exam revealed it was underwight, but did not have any obvious orthopedic injuries.View Patient Detail
Adult male loggerheads can reach about three feet in shell length and weigh about 250 pounds, but larger individuals of more than 1,000 pounds have been documented. From May to October, they arrive in Gulf waters to mate with nesting females.
This adult male was observed from the beach struggling in the water and rolling over onto its back. It was rescued by the SCCF Turtle Research team and transported to the CROW Clinic.View Patient Detail
Kemp's Ridley sea turtles are one of the most critically endangered species of sea turtle. They are also one of the smallest species.
This juvenile turtle was admitted from Boca Grande after it was found near the cause way acting very lethargic. The turtle was rescued and transported to CROW by the Boca Grande Sea Turtle Association.View Patient Detail
Red tide has been ravishing our wildlife in recent weeks. Hundreds of sea turtles have been washing up dead on the shores of Southwest Florida. Many of them are breeding age adults which could have long term effects on sea turtle populations in our area.
This adult male loggerhead (#18-3223) washed ashore on the evening of August 13 in Naples, Florida. He was transported to the #CROWClinic the next morning by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. He is very weak and lethargic with no obvious signs of trauma. He is suspected to be another case of red tide poisoning.View Patient Detail
Did you know that loggerhead sea turtle are the largest of the hard-shelled sea turtles? Leatherback sea turtles are larger, but as their name implies, their shells are not hard.
This female loggerhead sea turtle was rescued from the water by Tarpon Bay Explorers and Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF) members after she was spotted floating with her back end up. She weighed in at approximately 290 pounds!View Patient Detail