Elias Pereira (aka Saile1234), who posted the photos Tuesday on Imgur, wrote that he and his mother were walking along Grande Riviere Beach in Trinidad when he saw the gigantic creature disoriented in a storm-created body of water.

The mini-lake had pooled at the end of the river, blocking access to the beach. The female leatherback had just laid her eggs and got completely turned around, he said.

The 17-year-old Pereira, an aspiring marine biologist, guided the turtle back to the ocean.

"It felt great knowing I had given back something to the ocean that had filled me with so much wonderment and awe," he wrote to The Huffington Post in an email.

He added that he spoke to a turtle conservationist later that day who told him that the leatherback would have died in the river had he not rescued it.

Trying to guide her out of the river and back into the ocean.

Pereira, an Aruban-American living in Trinidad, said on Reddit that the encounter happened eight months ago. He said he hoped to return to the area soon. (Grande Riviere is one of the "most important" leatherback nesting spots in the world, See Turtles writes.)

According to National Geographic, leatherbacks are the world's largest sea turtles, growing up to 7 feet long and 2,000 pounds. They are endangered. (Source)

Clearing debris from the beach

Guiding her out of the river - Image Source

Responses to "Elias Pereira Saves Leatherback Sea Turtle In Grande Riviere Beach, Trinidad (PHOTOS) "

  1. thank you thank you thank you♥

  2. Anonymous says:

    I have loved turtles all my life...a huge thank you to this man who cared enough to help this beautiful creature.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I'm sure that monsterous turtle is happy to be back in the sea and grateful for this young man's help!

  4. Anonymous says:

    My feels! <3

  5. Lynda says:

    That is awesome. We are (some of us)lucky to have the chance to come close to nature and help it along given a chance and make sure it survives when ever possible without getting in it's way. A helping hand is needed once in awhile to guide it and this turtle was lucky to receive one .

  6. What a career and life awaits this young benevolent hero! ...and the

  7. Fili says:

    That is so beautiful. I am so glad that he is a true hero. And he knew enough about that beautiful turtle to help her. Thank You for helping such a beautiful, endangered mama turtle.

  8. Anonymous says:

    There are super people in the world and he is one of them.

  9. Anonymous says:

    <3 <3 <3

  10. Unknown says:

    How lucky for the turtle that you were there, and how amazing for you to be able to touch it.
    I wish you every success in your chosen vocation.

  11. Anonymous says:

    every person should thank this man and people like him who work to save such awesome creatures

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