Northern Ireland

Columba the Donegal loggerhead turtle has died

Columba the Turtle Image copyright Exploris Aquarium
Image caption Columba was being treated for hypothermia by staff at Exploris Aquarium

A loggerhead turtle that washed up on a County Donegal beach and was being looked after at an aquarium in Portaferry, County Down, has died.

Staff at the Exploris aquarium said that despite their attempts to save it, the turtle, which had hypothermia, died during the night.

It landed on Irish shores after being blown off course from the Gulf Stream into the colder North Atlantic.

Aquarium staff named it Columba.

Tanya Singleton, who works at Exploris said they knew it would be a battle to save the turtle. Staff tried to raise its core temperature, and treated it with antibiotics.

"He was still spending long, long periods being very inactive and very lethargic so we were quite concerned that there were underlying problems there that we just didn't know about."

Colulmba will now be taken for a post-mortem to discover what caused his death.

More on this story