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Bruce Alrighty? Sea Turtle Badly Wounded By Shotgun Fire

Photo Credit: SeaWorld San Diego
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SeaWorld veterinarians at are treating a critically injured green sea turtle that was found in San Diego Bay wounded in the neck by shotgun fire, reports KTLA. Bruce, a 250-pound adult male turtle, is a "threatened species" and was near death when he was located in the San Diego Bay marshlands where he had been monitored for several years by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, notes LA Now. On Jan. 25 the creature was found during a routine check to be underweight and dehydrated, and had suffered deep lacerations to its tail and flipper. Said SeaWorld Assistant. Curator of Fishes Tim Downing, "Had he not come in and been given the care that we're giving him, which turned out to be lifesaving, he probably wouldn't have made it."

X-rays revealed four pellets lodged in the muscle of Bruce's throat, however there was no damage to arteries or major organs so they'll likely stay put as removing them could potentially cause more injury. It is believed the turtle was shot some time ago, and based on the pellet position at the bottom of his neck veterinarians suggest Bruce was shot when he lifted his head out of the water to take a breath.