Bites at Animal Planet


18 Aug

Plastic Straw Removed from Sea Turtle's Nose

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Ameena Schelling from

Warning: some of these images may be considered graphic

One look at this turtle and you will never litter again.

Turtle researcher Nathan Robinson and his colleague, Chris Figgener, were looking for mating sea turtles off the coast of Costa Rica when they came across an olive ridley sea turtle with something odd up his nose.

Robinson, who's currently studying creatures who live on sea turtles, originally thought it was a tubeworm. But when he tried to pull it out, he realized it was something quite different. 

Nathan Robinson 

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13 Aug

Butterfly Species Drinks Tears of Turtles

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Caitlin Jill Anders from

Animals in the wild have so many fascinating behaviors that we can only begin to understand. Sometimes pictures surface and we're not really sure what's happening — but we make our best guess, and it's beautiful regardless.

A photograph is making the rounds of a butterfly perched gently on a turtle's eye— and people think the butterfly might actually be drinking the turtle's tears.

Ama La Vida TV

There is indeed a butterfly in the Amazon who drinks the tears of turtles, and that could very well be what's happening in this picture. There are also butterflies who drink crocodile tears. Butterflies drink tears of other animals for the nutrients, and are mainly looking for salt, as sodium can be hard to find from other sources.

It is such a beautiful reminder of how amazing animals are, and how well they work together to live their lives.

Check out the full video of a butterfly drinking crocodile tears below: 

Get more info about an interesting species of butterfly below. 

12 Aug

Genius Tortoise Blows His Family Away with New Talent

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Anna Swartz from

You know when your tortoise is in the yard and you have to keep getting up to let him back in the house? Well that's not a problem for this guy's family — Jeffrey the tortoise figured out how to open the back door all by himself.

"Hey guys, I'm done out here so I'm coming back in." 

"Don't worry humans I don't need your help because I am a FREAKING INCREDIBLY TALENTED TORTOISE."

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23 Jul

Turtle Saved from Soup Pot by Costa Rican Police

A green sea turtle was rescued last week by Judicial Investigation Police after they received a tip by a neighbor, according to The Tico Times. The 264-pound turtle was found on its back and bound in a private home. It was suffering from six harpoon wounds, inflicted during its capture. This is the second sea turtle in three weeks to be rescued from ending up in someone's bowl. The first was found in the trunk of a car and suffers from critical injuries, including a harpoon wound to its lung. 

These turtles are captured and eventually sold to be put in turtle soup. Green sea turtles are already listed on the endangered species list and if the harvesting of both their meat and eggs doesn't stop, this species could disappear forever. They are protected by the Sea Turtle Conservation and Protection Law and those found poaching the creatures can face up to three years in prison.

Both are being rehabilitated at the Jaguar Rescue Center.

 Learn more about protecting sea turtles here!

13 May

90-Year-Old Tortoise's Legs Chewed Off By Rat, Wheels Give Her a Second Chance (VIDEO)

While Mrs. T the 90-year-old tortoise was hibernating in her United Kingdom home, she was viciously attacked by a rat that chewed off her front feet.

Photo: YouTube video image

However, this horrifying story has a heartwarming ending - her owner Jude Ryder rushed her off to the vet who performed immediate amputation to save Mrs. T's life. And, with the help of Ryder's ingenious son Dale, a mechanical engineer, Mrs. T's mobility was restore.  He was able to fashion a set of wheels from a model airplane toy set and give her a second chance at a normal tortoise life. Read more of the story here >>

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10 Mar

Rare Leatherback Sea Turtle Rescued from South Carolina Shore


A rare leatherback sea turtle found itself on a South Carolina beach Saturday, becoming one of just a few live leatherback strandings reported in the United States.

The turtle, named Yawkey based on where it was found (Yawkey South Island Reserve) South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) to the South Carolina Aquarium Sea Turtle Hospital to receive treatment, according to a press release. The turtle is a juvenile, under 10 years old, and weighs in at 475 pounds.

It is unclear how Yawkey became stranded. According to the same press release, during the spring and fall seasons, leatherback sea turtles migrate through South Carolina's coastal waters. They can currently be found nesting off of the Florida coast - a key reason why the Aquarium hopes to release Yawkey back into the wild within the next two days.

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12 Jan

Adorable Tortoise Can Walk Again with Custom Lego Wheelchair

Meet Blade, an adorable little tortoise with a very special story. Blade was born with a metabolic bone disease, gradually leaving him unable to support the weight of his shell.

When his owner Iris Pleste started to notice his slowing pace, she took him to the local veternarian, Dr. Carsten Plischke in Bielefeld, Germany.

Dr. Plischke was able to fashion a very special, custom, "wheelchair" made of Legos.

Photo: RuptlyTV via YouTube image

“We mounted Lego wheels on the tortoise Blade because he had a bone metabolism illness and his shell was too heavy and he had a loss of muscles,” Plischke told CNET. “That’s why he couldn’t pick up himself and walk anymore. The bones were like rubber and the musculature had clearly diminished,” Dr. Plischke said, according to a Yahoo News report.

The wheelchair should help strengthen Blade's legs so he can, hopefully, eventually walk on his own one day.

Continue reading >

15 Jul

Untold Stories of the ER: Snapping Turtle Latches on and Won't Let Go

Our friends over at Discovery Fit & Health shared this crazy video with us from Untold Stories of the ER.

Patient Bo was noodling for catfish (just like our friends on Hillbilly Handfishin'!) when a 25-pound alligator snapping turtle latched onto his neck. Shouldn't be a problem to remove it, right?

Wrong. If the doctor harms or, worse, kills the turtle during removal, the catfishers risk serving jailtime according to the game warden who accompanied the group to the emergency room. Not to mention that pesky little detail of how strong the turtle is and the fact that it can hold its breath for an extended period of time.

Check out the video above, then watch some more awesome turtle videos.

29 May

Amputee Sea Turtle Gets Second Chance With Jet Fighter Fins


Hofesh's new fins enables him to swim and float. (Photo from Ariel Schalit/AP)

Just call this sea turtle Maverick! Thanks to some good Samaritans and a little military ingenuity, an amputee green sea turtle can swim again with the help of artificial fins.

A bad encounter with a fishing net cost Hofesh (which means “freedom” in English) his two left flippers, leaving him unable to lift his head and breathe, according to the Huffington Post. But with a little help from Israeli design student, Shlomi Gez, and the team at the Israel Turtle Rescue Center, Hofesh can now swim and balance with a pair of artificial fins built specifically for him.

Continue reading >

19 Sep

LIVE ACTION! Live Tweet with Turtleman and Neal This Sunday @ 9PM!


Calling all Turtle fans!  Love LIVE ACTION?! Try LIVE tweeting! Catch an all-new episode on Sunday, Sept. 22, at 9 p.m. e/p and live tweet with Turtleman and Neal!


Use the hashtag #turtleman to tweet during the show -- and YOUR tweet might make it on air! Ernie and Neal will be tweeting along with everyone and checking out what you have to say. Make it good!


Watch More Call of the Wildman Videos >>




Betty Chu is a Digital Media Executive Producer for Follow her on Twitter @beddychew or Facebook for the cutest animal posts EVER.







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