On Tuesday evening, as the world searched for a silver lining in the phrase “fire and fury,” the Department of the Interior announced that the final baby Kemp’s ridley sea turtle release of the year had gone off without a hitch at Padre Island National Seashore in Texas. The news was a bit late—the video was filmed on July 29th—but no matter. Have you ever seen footage of sea turtles making their first steps toward water? Have you seen them pause curiously for seemingly forever only to scurry forward for a few seconds and then pause again? Have you seen them wiggle their little sand-encrusted turtle…claws? Paws? Oars? Flippers? (Flippers.)
Have you lived?
Run turtle, run! 🐢💨
Last hatchling release of 2017 @PadreIslandNPS in #Texas pic.twitter.com/Qya15rqoBi
— US Department of the Interior (@Interior) August 8, 2017
But it turns out the Interior tweet is fake news—the actual actual final release of baby Kemp’s ridley sea turtles this summer was on July 30th. That moment was captured by the Padre Island Instagram account (which I recommend if you’re into that kind of thing). The first video has a sort of ominous quality, but I happen to like the buddy-comedy aspect of this one:
An earlier video, from a few days earlier, captures the full dramatic arc. A single baby turtle, determinedly making his way toward the surf, and then…wham! Don’t miss the dramatic ending:
They’re so tiny! This one started going the wrong way in pursuit of the cameraman:
Watch this little buddy go up and over a huge piece of seaweed like it’s nothing:
I could watch these forever. Make sure to download them to your phone; you may not have WiFi in your survival bunker.