Vietnam Scrambles to Save Sacred Turtle

Hundred-year-old, giant turtle endangered by pollution
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 8, 2011 2:23 PM CST

(Newser) – Hanoi residents crowded around a lake today to witness the military's rescue attempt of a sacred animal: a giant freshwater turtle thought to be up to 100 years old. The Rafeteus swinhoej in Hoan Kiem Lake is one of only four specimens known to be alive, and its 6-foot-long body is in a bad way, dotted by pink sores. Pollution of its home lake is thought to be the cause, and the military is attempting to transport it to cleaner climes with a giant net. So far, the turtle has escaped rescuers' grasp, the AP reports.

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