Prosthetic Pair of Fins Help Injured Green Sea Turtle
Israeli team of researchers has designed a new pair of prosthetic fins that helped green sea turtle, Hofesh, to recover from his injuries. Hofesh was found by researchers in fishing net off Israel's Mediterranean coast in early 2009 in a very critical condition.
The two left flippers of the sea turtle were badly wounded with a need for researchers to amputate the turtle. Earlier, they inserted a pair of stumps to the turtle, but it made the turtle more paralyzed and left him unable to swim.
Yaniv Levy, director of Israel's Sea Turtle Rescue Centre, said on inserting diver’s fin, the turtle felt little relieved and he tried to swim. Shlomi Gez, an industrial design student at Jerusalem's Hadassah College, designed prosthetic based fish's dorsal fin which helped the turtle much better.
However, the turtle was still facing difficulties in breathing and rising to the surface. Later on, Mr. Gez designed a new prosthetic with two fins on being inspired by the design of Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor warplane.
The newly designed device allowed the turtle to move easily around his tank. The pair of fins helped the creature to potentially lift him up and maintain balance while swimming. Mr. Levy said that Hofesh will never be able to return to the wild, but remains optimistic that the creature will be able to mate successfully.
He said that the offspring of the green sea turtle will be released the minute they hatch into the sea and live normally in the wild.
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