A turtle in Thailand has died after consuming 915 coins that had been thrown into her home.
The turtle, oddly named Bank, lived in captivity in a public pond where people would often throw their loose change and make a wish.
Because Bank didn't know any better, she would eat all the coins that came into her habitation. People would throw them every day, so she always had a replenished supply.
Unfortunately for Bank, all these coins ended up poisoning her blood. On March 6th, surgeons at Bangkok's Chulalongkorn University perform a 4 hour surgery to try and remove all the coins from the poor turtle's stomach. The coins had formed a mass large enough in her stomach to crack Bank's shell.
11lbs of change was removed from Bank's stomach. The surgery was paid for in part by people in the community who were moved my Bank's heart-breaking story.
Sadly, Bank passed away from complications due to surgery.
“I felt angry that humans, whether or not they meant to do it or if they did it without thinking, had caused harm to this turtle,” Dr. Nantarika Chansue, one of the vets who operated on Bank, said. “She at least had the chance to swim freely and eat happily before she passed. She is my friend, teacher and patient.”
Bank had seemed to be fine after surgery, but a later followup showed she still had a myriad of intestinal issues. She required a second surgery, which she never woke up from.
This is a somber reminder to people everywhere that animals are not attractions, but rather living creatures who deserve to be treated with respect.