Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Transformation in Progress: Make Way for Myrtle

Transformation in Progress
Sharks live in fear of her.
She has appeared in TV commercials and movies.
Millions of people have taken pictures of her.
She has been the subject of research that has helped save thousands of her kind.

Myrtle has a temporary new home. (Photo: D. Finks)

At 560 pounds and 80-plus years old, Myrtle the green sea turtle is the grande dame of the New England Aquarium. She has ruled over the Giant Ocean Tank for the past four decades, but now her home is undergoing a nine-month, $17 million transformation. Myrtle had to be moved before work could begin. Biologists, veterinarians and divers at the Aquarium planned carefully how to move this powerful and piquant personality to her temporary home. Here is video of that successful transfer.

The move went off without a hitch, and now you can appreciate Myrtle's imposing presence from a whole new perspective in the penguin exhibit.


  1. I am very glad to see how she was moved. Myrtle was there at the Aquarium when I came to visit as a child. SHe was brand new to the Aquarium at the time, but already a star. Now I have taken my babies there to be soothed by the great tank and visuals of Myrtle. Now that the children are older, we dash in and look for where Myrtle is. My daughter sometimes looks at me with a twinkle in her eye and says, "You know where she is, Mom. She is at the top trying to mooch some lettuce!" So we go to the top and there is the Grande Dame indeed, holding court with her green finery. I treasure this shared moment through time with our Myrtle.

    1. What an amazing story, Amy. Indeed, generations have grown to know and love Myrtle and her neighbors in the Giant Ocean Tank. We're excited to be making her home better than ever! After the construction is over, I hope you'll come visit next summer to see the transformed tank and the queen pestering the divers for lettuce.


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