KURE BEACH, N.C. (WECT) - The North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher is holding a public contest to help name two baby loggerhead sea turtles currently in the aquarium’s care.
The aquarium staff selected five names as finalists for the public to choose: Bubbles, Hatch, Noggin, Pearl, and Scute. Voting started Monday and is expected to wrap up on Dec. 3.
The two winning names will be announced on Wednesday, Dec. 4.
“Giving these sea turtles a name allows our guests to more deeply connect with the animals and better understand how our actions impact them and other marine animals,” said Gail Lemiec, aquarium educator.
The aquarium began caring for the tiny loggerheads after the animals were excavated from two nests earlier this year in Kure Beach. Each summer, the aquarium works in partnership with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission and local sea turtle rescue organizations, accepting a limited number of hatchlings that are found in the nest three days after hatching, but do not make the initial trek to the sea.
The turtles receive daily care ensuring their growth and development. They serve as animal ambassadors helping visitors understand the threats faced by vulnerable sea turtles locally and globally.
The loggerheads will remain in aquarium care for a little more than a year and will then be released into the Atlantic Ocean. Two yearling loggerheads, Castor and Carretta, who were named last year, will be released soon into the warm waters of the Gulf Stream current.