The rescue center, founded in 1996, usually treats about 30 or 40 cold-stunned sea turtles during the winter. Ms. Montello has looked at records dating back to 1980, and said this year’s numbers are concerning. “Historically, our biggest year was 2019, where we had 85 turtles strand in that short window of six to eight weeks,” Ms. Montello said. “But this year we had 95.” Of the 95 turtles found cold-stunned this season, 48 are still alive and in the care of the rescue center. The others were either dead when they washed up or perished soon after. “Their survival is dependent on how quickly they’re found,” said Ms. Montello. A few of the turtles in the Riverhead facility were transferred from Boston, which is also experiencing record numbers of cold-stunned turtles this season. A lot is unknown about these creatures’ lives in the New York area, and much of the data comes from stranded turtles, not thrilling ones. Ms. Montello’s research plans involve recording turtle behavior using custom zed video cameras that will be attached with suction cups to the backs of healthy turtles when they are released. “I think we’re going to capture some of the first videos of turtles underwater here in New York, specifically,” she said. But first: Everyone’s got to eat. Feeding dozens of sea turtles requires teamwork. It takes an hour to prepare the meals — “I’m probably the fastest in town,” said Ms. Montello — and another hour or so to distribute them.After the raw fish was loaded onto plastic trays, Victoria Gluck, a biologist on staff, carried a tray over to a turtle tank and doled out the meals with tongs, piece by piece, to the corresponding patients, whose numbers were written on their backs with nontoxic paint. Two volunteers, Britney Dowling and Cecilia Gonzalez, used nets to keep the other hungry turtles away as Ms. Gluck placed fish in front of each turtle, ensuring that they all got their allotted share; a turtle is supposed to eat 2 percent of its body weight a day.