Project Description

Martin called GSVH when he was concerned that his female turtle, Sandy, wasn’t laying eggs. We asked ‘how do you know she has eggs?’ and Martin replied that she has been digging, standing and pushing, and yet nothing comes out. Martin chose GSVH because we have been a member of the Amphibian Association for 15 years, even though he lives more than two hours away.

We took x-rays and found five eggs were inside. We needed to perform a c-section to remove them. The process started with injections of oxytocin for 1/2 a day for three days. Then we could do the surgery on the fourth day. Martin was so dedicated, he drove four hours for four days to complete the c-section process. We started the surgery at 7pm and finished at 3am the next morning. It was both a challenge and a beautiful success. We sawed through the bony shell, removed the eggs, and used mesh and super glue to suture the bone, and then sutured the skin under the shell.

Did you know: When a turtle gets cold, like during surgery, it goes into hibernation and you can’t tell if it is alive so you just have to keep working.