A rehabilitated green sea turtle is returning to the wild off the Florida east coast.
Pearl was found in December in the Bal Harbor area dehydrated, lethargic and with parasites. It was taken to Miami Seaquarium where it spent months recovering. The park says the turtle will be released on Thursday at Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park on Key Biscayne.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Florida's breeding population of green turtles is classified as endangered.
The commission says the species' numbers are in decline because of illegal trade in sea turtle products, habitat loss, and harm from pollution, dredges, offshore oil and exploration activities, fishing gear, and boats.