Vet painstakingly removes fishhook from mouth of endangered turtle

A vet in western India painstakingly removed a fishhook last month from the mouth of an endangered softshell turtle. Villagers spotted the reptile writhing in agony on the banks of the Singora river in Gir National Park in Gujarat state on September 26. Dr Idrish located the stricken creature and took it to the animal rescue centre for treatment. According to Idrish, the turtle kept retracting its head and neck making it difficult to remove the hook which was obstructing the animal's breathing. "I decided to give an anaesthesia after that I was able to remove the hook from turtle nostrils," he said. On September 28, Idrish released the turtle into its natural habitat and it swam away apparently entirely recovered from its ordeal. The Indian softshell turtle, also known as the Ganges softshell turtle, is classified as "Endangered" on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

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