Sea turtles outlived their contemporaries, the dinosaurs, but they need our help against modern threats. Sea Turtles: Ancient Survivors, explains the traits that helped sea turtles triumph in the past, the trials they face today from hunters, loss of nesting beaches and from run-ins with fishing gear—and the things you can do to help. You can also learn about Mote's Sea Turtle Conservation & Research Program here, as well as our special Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Hospital, where we treat sick turtles so they can go home again to the ocean.

Hang Tough

Ancient Survivors features Hang Tough, a blind green turtle that came to Mote's Sea Turtle Rehabilitation Hospital in 1992 with severe head injuries that damaged both optical nerves. We helped Hang Tough recover, but due to blindness, this animal cannot survive in the wild. Mote is honored to provide this ancient survivor with a lifelong home and the support needed to thrive. Mote's animal care experts have spent many hours helping Hang Tough learn to navigate this specially designed habitat.


Montego is an adult female loggerhead sea turtle born in North Carolina in 1977. She was raised in human care and participated in growth and mating studies. When those studies ended, Montego (who was named in an essay contest for school children) came to Mote to help educate the public about sea turtles.

Hatchling Hospital

Sea turtles nest on Gulf of Mexico beaches from May through October. Sometimes the hatchlings emerging from these nests need a little extra help — that's where the Hatchling Hospital comes in. Hatchlings that may need a few days to weeks of medical care are treated in this special hospital and then returned to the wild when they are healthy — giving wild populations a boost.

Sea Turtles: Ancient Survivors was made possible by a generous donation from Mote Volunteer Penelope Kingman in honor of her husband, Barry J. Kingman, who was also a Mote Volunteer, and through a grant from the Sea Turtle Grants Program, which is funded from proceeds from the sale of the Florida Sea Turtle License Plate. Get your Florida Sea Turtle License Plate online at


Sea Turtles: Ancient Survivors was funded in-part by a grant awarded from the Sea Turtle Grants Program. The Sea Turtle Grants Program is funded by proceeds from the sale of the Florida Sea Turtle License Plate. Learn more at



You can adopt a sea turtle at Mote! Your symbolic adoption directly benefits Mote Aquarium and the animals inside it.

Adopt a Sea Turtle Today!