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Israeli experts give injured turtle new hope with one of a kind prosthetic fin

By Mason White 5:09 PM May 19, 2014
Hofesh also known as Freedom turtle 

By: Aarav Sen
(Scroll down for video) An injured turtle can now move around on its own thanks to an Israeli medical team that provides it with a prosthetic fin.

The prospects of the wounded sea turtle are improving, thanks to the new prosthetic fin designed and implanted by the Israeli team.

The fin was modeled as the wings of a U.S. fighter jet. The green turtle named Hofesh, which is the Hebrew word for freedom, was caught in a fishing net off the Mediterranean coast.

The turtle’s two left fins were seriously damaged, and rescuers had to amputate them, leaving it unable to swim. Shlomi Gez, a student of industrial design at Hadassah University in Jerusalem, read about the animal through the Internet, and wanted to help.

He designed a prosthesis based on the dorsal fin of a fish. The fin provided some improvement, but Hofesh still had trouble breathing and surfacing.

Then, inspired by the design of Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor fighter jet, he designed a new prosthesis with two fins. The device, similar to the wings of the aircraft, was tied to the back of Hofesh on Thursday, allowing it to easily move around.

Gez said that the turtle is about 23 years old, and it spends its days with a blind female turtle.