Animals

Rescued Turtle Recovering After Eating Tourists' Coins For Years

A few careless tourist trying to earn themselves a bit of good luck ended up hurting a very unlucky turtle.

Om Sin, who's name is Thai for "Piggy Bank," lives at a conservation center for marine animals in Sriracha, Thailand. The 25-year-old turtle used to live in a small pool in a tourist town, where visitors would toss coins to her for good luck.

The starving turtle would actually eat the coins, and over the years they caused lots of health problems for her. Last week, she underwent a grueling surgery to remove the 915 coins trapped in her stomach.

The mass of coins, which weighed an unbelievable 11 pounds, were starting to crack Om Sin's shell. While there are lots of stories about sea animals eating the trash people throw away, Pasakorn Brikshavana, one of the vets that operated on Om Sin, told the Bangkok Post he'd "never seen such a case before."

It took a team of five surgeons four hours to remove the coins, and Om Sin will have to stay on a safe, healthy liquid diet for a few weeks while she recovers.

Thankfully, with the right care this adorable reptile has a long life ahead of her. Green sea turtles regularly live to be 100, and odds are good that Om Sin will live the rest of her life happily now that she's been rescued.

Hopefully her experience will teach more people to think about how their litter can affect innocent animals!

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