A guide who fishes Southern Biscayne Bay recently sent the following:
"These photos are from a Florida cooter I grabbed as it was washing out into the bay during heavy weather and flow from Military Canal (draining Homestead Air Force Base) which is very close to FPL Turkey Point. I was able to shovel the turtle into my boat with the push pole. The turtle was swimming without any particular direction. As soon as it was in the boat, even with the waves bouncing and storm overhead, it started walking around then straight to me which is very odd behavior for a turtle. Then I noticed the turtle was severely deformed. It didn't have eyes, no nostrils and no jaw ... just a hole. Somehow it had survived. A local zoo agreed to take the turtle. The people in the zoo were fascinated and came to the conclusion that it was injured young and survived. I don't buy it. This turtle is deformed."