Omsin is the name of a green sea turtle who lived in a local turtle pond in a town located near the Gulf of #Thailand. As the sea turtle swam around in her pool all day, she frequently received coins who her guests would throw into her pool for “good luck”. These good luck gestures, however, took a very fatal turn when veterinarians learned the turtle had been eating the coins.
Veterinarians ended up pulling 11 pounds of coins out of the Omsin’s stomach during an emergency surgery. It was the green sea turtle’s keeper that first noticed that she was acting strange and appeared to be having trouble swimming – so they took her in to be examined. As a result, veterinarians at Chuallongkorn University performed an emergency surgery that lasted for hours on the turtle..
The irony of her name
As many media outlets have pointed out, this green turtle’s name adds a layer of irony to the story. Omsin’s name translates to mean “piggy bank” in Thai. In total, the sea turtle spent seven hours under the knife. During the surgery, the veterinarians pulled a total of 915 coins out of her belly as if she were a piggy bank. Each one of these 915 coins dropped into the water under the impression that they would bring good luck.
The coins cracked her shell
The 11 pounds of coins inside of the sea turtle’s belly ended up cracking her shell. The 915 coins were so heavy it made it difficult for Omsin to even swim around her pond.
What makes this story even more tragic is the fact that green sea turtles are endangered due to a combination of their eggs being harvested, them becoming entangled in fishing nets, and the decline of their homes.
This isn’t a new problem
The unfortunate truth is sea creatures eating objects tossed into their homes by humans isn’t really a new problem.
It has been estimated that all of the oceans in the world contain more than 5 trillion pieces of plastic weighing more than 250,000 tons. The worst part is that most of this trash and plastic ends up inside the belly of a marine creature who calls the ocean their home. Sea turtles specifically are especially sensitive to this problem as eating trash can cause malnutrition, digestive problems, and everything in between.
Hopefully Omsin can recover from the surgery as – per the life expectancy of a green sea turtle – she could live another 80 years.