MELBOURNE, Fla., October 20, 2020 — Brevard Zoo released 370-pound female loggerhead sea turtle Perseverance this morning in Cocoa Beach following a successful rehabilitation stint at the Zoo’s Sea Turtle Healing Center. Brevard County Ocean Rescue (BCOR) helped transport the reptile from the parking lot to the release site.

Named after NASA’s Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, this sea turtle was observed struggling to nest by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in late July. An exam conducted on the beach revealed abnormalities such as an old, healed injury on the shell; swelling; and weakness.

After several nights of failed nesting attempts, Perseverance was rescued with assistance from BCOR and University of Central Florida, then transported to the Healing Center on July 31. Ultrasounds indicated she had difficulty passing eggs; she was induced by veterinarians and laid over 100 eggs, which were ultimately buried for incubation on a beach in southern Brevard County.

Perseverance was also treated with nutritional support, fluids and medications before being deemed ready for release.

All seven of the world’s sea turtle species are threatened by human hunting, entanglement in fishing equipment, marine debris, shrinking beaches, pollution and climate change.

Individuals who find distressed sea turtles in Brevard County should contact Sea Turtle Preservation Society at 321-206-0646 or Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-FWCC. 

Photos and video:

Elliot Zirulnik, Communications Manager
321-254-9453, ext. 236


Brevard Zoo is home to more than 900 animals representing 195 species from all over the world. As a not-for-profit organization, it is a leader in the fields of animal wellness, education and conservation. More information is available at