ATLANTIC BEACH -

ATLANTIC BEACH, N.C. (AP) - Six sea turtles will begin their journey back to the wild by being loaded on the Coast Guard Cutter Block Island in Atlantic Beach.
    
The boat will take the turtles dozens of miles off the North Carolina coast to the warm waters of the Gulf Stream and release them into the ocean Thursday as it starts its patrol off the Southeast coast.
    
One turtle on board represents a milestone for the South Carolina Aquarium's Sea Turtle Rescue Program. A turtle named Gumby is the 100th sea turtle to be successfully rehabilitated and released by the program since it began in 2000.
    
Loggerhead sea turtles are a threatened species in the Southeast.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)