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30 October 2006 @ 02:49 pm
Too Sad  
Oh what a horror. There must be a word that means ironic but isn't so cheery.

Alice, the old box turtle lady, thinks she has created a haven, an oasis, a sanctuary for case-off box turtles. She calls every classified for a box turtle that is no longer wanted. She then adds the poor thing to the others in her collection in her backyard.

We went there yesterday to pick-up a russian tortoise she'd acquired. She invited us to look around her backyard at the turtles. This time of year her backyard is mostly shadow and shade. It is covered with ivy, where I presume the turtles hide. The narrow paths are over grown. Alice uses a walker and can not navigate her yard without difficulty. I think she rarely if ever checks on the turtles. If she did check on them I think it would be with the filter of her ignorance.

Jim found two empty shells almost without looking. The live turtles we saw could not move for the cold. We saw turtles with shell rot and dehydration. One turtle I picked up was so light he seemed hollow. Oh, the irony. She has an electric fence to keep out predators.

We brought Alice the empty shells and the dying turtle. She was shaken and saddened. "This is upsetting", she said. I felt helpless in the face of Alice's well meaning but clueless view of what she is doing. A lonely old woman who wants to do good.

Last night Jim and I both had bad dreams. We both reached the same conclusion, we must contact animal control.
A man of ruthless compassionmachinarex on October 30th, 2006 11:23 pm (UTC)
It is very sad, since her intentions are in the right place, but I think you're doing the right thing in contacting animal control.
A Piece of My ♥: Edyprettyedy on November 2nd, 2006 06:05 am (UTC)
It is so sad. We know she will feel betrayed. It need to be done. People hand over their turtles to her because she tells them she is rescuing them. If it was that easy our backyard would be full of turtles.
A man of ruthless compassionmachinarex on November 2nd, 2006 10:21 pm (UTC)
I sincerely feel for you, and don't envy you at all...however, my BF just offered another possible option.

Are there any animal rescues (possibly turtle/herp specific) that you could contact and see if there is anyone interested in volunteering time to assist her in their care?
A Piece of My ♥: Edyprettyedy on November 3rd, 2006 05:46 am (UTC)
After we visited Alice, I spent the rest of the day trying to think about what I could do for the turtles and Alice to make it better. I was willing to help Alice if she would let me, but I ran into a few problems. The biggest problem at this point is the current health of the turtles. We've nursed fragile box turtles before and it always involves, at the minimum, keeping them warm and regular soaking to rehydrate them.

Sadly, at this point I think most of her turtles are past saving.
A man of ruthless compassion: artwork by <lj user=feychilde>machinarex on November 3rd, 2006 06:04 am (UTC)
I'd mentioned to Charlie (the BF) that that was the sense I was getting...that they were maybe past the point of being able to bring back to health.

I wish I could help you, but all I can do is say thank you, though I realize what you're dealing with is unpleasant...thank you for being realistic, thank you for being caring, and thank you for all of it in general.

remember that as hard as your choices may be, they are for the best.
tung lov: how's ya hamma' hangin'tunglov on November 26th, 2006 06:04 pm (UTC)
did you make a thourough attempt to aleviate Alice of her ignorance ? did you explain to her how what you think she thinks shes doing is not working ? and what she would need to do to meet your standards for saving turtles ? and offer to help her learn ?

thank you.