Animal programs

Animal rehabilitation center uses honey to treat sea turtles

While honey is often associated with bees and bears, the Amos Rehabilitation Center in Port Aransas uses this substance to treat sea turtles.

ARANSAS PASS, Texas – Although honey is known for its sweet taste, some may not have known that the substance has healing properties as well.

In Port Aransas, the Amos Rehabilitation Dungeon (ARK) uses the sticky substance in its efforts to cure sick sea turtles. Dr Shayna Whitaker is one of the vets who uses the all-natural sweet substance to treat injured sea turtles like Olaf.

“So when we have sores, we use it as a topical treatment,” Whitaker said. “We use it because it has antimicrobial properties and it has antibacterial properties.”

Whitaker said Olaf benefited greatly from the honey treatment.

“We hope that within 15 or 20 minutes, but it will have some of the effects that we are hoping for,” Whitaker said.

While it seems odd that honey is being used to treat injured sea turtles, Whitaker said there have been studies showing the treatments are working.

“There are a lot of different studies where they actually went ahead and they studied that it worked with sea turtles and that the wounds healed,” Whitaker said.

The rehabilitation center obtains the honey from the neighboring Fennessey Ranch in Bayside, Texas. Program coordinator Alicia Walker said they started using honey treatments about five years ago.

The KRG spent quite a bit of money each year buying raw honey before the ranch stepped in to help.

“A year, we spent about $ 600 on raw honey,” Walker said. “And now we’re not spending anything because of this partnership with the Fennessey Ranch.”

The partnership is helping the KRG rehabilitation center to treat sea turtles to restore them to good health. They believe that honey guarantees a sweet ending in most cases.

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