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leatherback turtle necropsy

Loss and Opportunity

In 2007, WHOI biologist Darlene Ketten (in blue), turtle physiology expert Jeanette Wyneken of Florida Atlantic University (in white) and a team of biologists and veterinarians conducted a necropsy of a 900-lb leatherback turtle in WHOI's Computerized Scanning and Imaging Facility. WHOI staff used the high-resolution CT scanner to create precise visualizations of the turtle's internal structure that are impossible to achieve by traditional dissection. The leatherback, an endangered species, had been inadvertently caught off Florida’s coast. Its death gave researchers a rare opportunity to learn about these elusive animals. (Photo by Tom Kleindinst, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)


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