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Injured Sea Turtles from the Gulf Arrive for Care at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Jackie Ogden, Ph.D.

by , Disney Parks

Disney’s Animal Programs research scientist and veterinarian

Eight turtles injured by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico have begun their rehabilitation at Walt Disney World Resort under the care of our animal experts.

Late last week, Disney’s Animal Programs research scientist and veterinarian Dr. Andy Stamper transported the six endangered Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles — among the most endangered species of sea turtles in the world — and two green sea turtles from the Florida Panhandle to our facilities here at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Engineers and water science expert have converted a backstage area into a temporary rehabilitation facility – setting up salt-water pools capable of housing up to 35 sea turtles.

Oil can have a devastating effect on the health of sea turtles, birds and other marine wildlife. Over the next several months, many of these animals will require intense medical treatment. We will provide top-notch medical care wherever we can – whether it’s on a beach or in a state-of-the-art veterinary facility. Ultimately, our goal is to re-release these animals so they can once again thrive in the wild.

These efforts are part of our company’s coordinated approach to assisting with wildlife rescue efforts in the Gulf. Earlier this summer, we began care for seven Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtles diagnosed with pneumonia. The turtles were moved here from facilities in Mississippi to make room for animals injured by the oil spill. Our Disney animal care team stands ready to send more help to the Panhandle as needed and our licensed rehabilitation facilities at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and at Epcot’s The Seas with Nemo & Friends are available for treating additional turtles and birds impacted by the spill.

Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF), supported by Disney’s Friends for Change: Project Green, has also donated $100,000 to help with environmental and animal rescue efforts, including $50,000 to The National Audubon Society for their response in the Gulf and $50,000 in grants to various grassroots organizations assisting with the cleanup.


  • Disney is the happiest place on earth, even for turtles!!!!

  • hey Disney – thanks for this story – informative and heartlifting. Even better it’s great to know that an entertainment company can see ways to be part of the bigger picture and help in practical, tangible ways. Thanks Disney – and keep at it!!

  • Awww those turtles are too cute! And that is awesome! Are turtles the only animals–effected by the oil spill–that Disney is helping?

  • was captain jack with them?? (sorry, too easy)

  • Thank you Disney!! What a heart warming video.

  • Are they out for public viewing? We will be there next week. My daughter leaves the day we get back from vacation for college. She will be studying Marine Bio. She would like to specialize in caring for sea turtles. It would be a great experience for her!

  • Good job Disney!!!

  • Thank you for doing this! I think it’s wonderful that you are!

  • I would also like to know if guests will be able to view the turtles. We will be at Disney World from August 16 through August 30.

  • Great Job Disney World. Just one more reason we love Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom.

  • Me and my family are getting ready to got to disney world This weekend YEAH and reading this just makes me feel that disney is the place where dreams really can come true with all the help and donations that they give helping out when and where ever they can Thanks DISNEY

  • Poor things!! I am also glad to see Disney helping the animals. There are so many out there that won’t get help. It is nice to see some are being saved.

  • Yet another reason why I love Disney!!! Thanks for stepping up guys!

  • Awesome! Get well little turtles :)

  • That’s awesome WAY TO GO DISNEY !!

  • I am SOO HAPPY to see Disney helping these sea turtles as much as possible!!!. Turtles are my FAVORITE!!!. WAY TO GO DISNEY!!!.

  • Take good care of them!! They deserve the best care. Poor little thngs!

  • It’s great to see Disney helping some of the animals affected by oil spill. Will we be able to see any of these animals when visiting Conservation Station at Animal Kingdom?

  • SO CUTE!

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