4 min read

Baby Turtles Found Abandoned In Box Get Their Very Own Playground

They were rescued by a group of monks who found them on their doorstep.

When a monk discovered a box left just outside his temple in Bangkok, Thailand, 20 tiny lives were saved. 

It actually happens quite often that animals are left outside temples in Asia. Traffickers or people who have purchased endangered species as pets get concerned about getting in trouble, and so abandon them on the monks' doorsteps. 

In this case, the box contained 20 baby Indian star tortoises — a species considered vulnerable to extinction.

Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

"These little tortoises are some of the lucky ones," Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand (WFFT) wrote last month. WFFT is a safe haven and sanctuary for so many different kinds of animals in Thailand who have been stolen out of the wild or abused by human beings.

"It is thought that this species is being illegally smuggled from India into pet markets in Asia, Europe, and the United States," WFFT added. "[This species] is the most commonly seen tortoise at the infamous Chatuchak Weekend Market in Bangkok."

Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

Turtles are not only being stolen out of the wild β€” they're also losing their homes to land developers and farmers.

But the lucky 20 were transferred to WFFT for help, thanks to the monk who knew they needed special care. 

Indian star tortoises at rescue center
WFFT

Rescuers offered the turtles fresh fruit β€” which they happily accepted. 

Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

For a while, the turtles were kept inside so they could be examined and monitored by wildlife experts. But rescuers had a surprise they were working on for the babies. 

Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT
Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

"We are in the process of creating a specialized habitat where they can walk on grass, bask in the sun and cool off in a pool," WFFT wrote. 

Several weeks later, the baby turtles were introduced to their special little playground. 

Indian star tortoises saved from traffickers in Thailand
WFFT

There are several little houses for the turtles to sleep in, and lots of grass and tree branches they can practice climbing over. 

Playground for baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

Turtles can't exactly jump for joy — the way any dog might if given his own personal playground — but despite their hard exteriors, there was definitely a twinkle of excitement in their eyes as they started exploring their new home together. 

Playground for baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT
Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

When they grow, they'll be given an even larger habitat where they can live together, safe from traffickers and land developers

Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT

It's believed that tens of thousands of these turtles are illegally stolen from the wild every year to be sold as pets. Thankfully, these babies were spared that fate. 

Baby Indian star tortoises saved in Thailand
WFFT
To help WFFT save more animals in need, you can make a donation.