This week an Asiatic softshell turtle (Amyda cartilaginea, Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List) was confiscated by a Forestry Administration law enforcement team. This rather strange reptile has a long, tubular snout, paddle-like limbs tipped with sharp claws, and leathery skin instead of the typical bony plates of many other turtle species. Although having a large geographic range, from Bangladesh to Indonesia, this species is a popular food animal and appears frequently in the Asian food trade.
After checking it over for any sign of disease or injury, it was taken to a small lake within Seima Protection Forest for release, an area typical of its preferred habitat. As soon as it saw water, it began a frantic wriggling, and once placed on the ground it sprinted the last five meters to the edge of the lake and disappeared with a loud splash, no doubt happy to be back.