A long-necked turtle pays us a visit

In February we had an unusual visitor. A long-necked turtle was found in the garden of a local resident who brought it to us as she was unsure of what to do with it. She was also concerned that the turtle may have been injured as she could see a crack in its shell. Dr Andrea gave the turtle a full check over and it was in really good shape. The turtle was very strong - we could tell by the way it kept trying to escape from us! The crack in its shell turned out to be an old wound that had long since healed. This meant that there was a deformity in its shell but it was not a cause for concern.

Nurse Eliza called Wildlife Victoria to get their advice on what to do with the turtle. They advised that as long as it was fit and healthy, it should be released back into a native waterway. The vast majority of turtles found by the public are wild, although many people assume they are escaped pets. Nurse Dee took the turtle down to Merri Creek and released it onto the rocks by the water. It shortly climbed into the water and swam away. The photo shows the turtle taking in its new surroundings before making a break for freedom.

If you find any lost or stranded wildlife, you can call Wildlife Victoria on 13000 WILDLIFE or 1300 094 535 to get advice. Or you can call your local vet clinic or bring the animal to the clinic in person. Remember to take precaution when handling a wildlife, ensuring you and the wildlife are not in any danger. Unless injured, most animals just need to be released into a safe area.

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