- Associated Press - Saturday, September 1, 2012

MIAMI (AP) - An endangered female hawksbill sea turtle, laden with eggs, is on its way to receive specialized care at the Turtle Hospital in the Florida Keys, after being flown to Miami from the U.S. Virgin Islands.

American Airlines provided free transportation for the turtle to Miami International Airport Saturday, where it was loaded on the Turtle Hospital’s ambulance for the trip down the Keys’ Overseas Highway to the Marathon-based facility.

The 71-pound reptile was found on a St. Croix beach Aug. 24, likely washed ashore by Tropical Storm Isaac, Virgin Islands fish and wildlife officials said.

The turtle has deep wounds on both shoulders. Officials said it might have been hooked by a fisherman and then repeatedly gaffed to remove the fishing gear.

Online:

The Turtle Hospital: http://www.turtlehospital.org