European TV to film Vietnam's iconic turtle

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Báo Thanh Niên English - 32 month(s) ago 1 readings

Arte, a European culture channel, will send a crew to Vietnam later this month to make a film on the rare turtle at Hanoi’s Sword Lake.

The channel has consulted with Ha Dinh Duc, the professor who has been campaigning to protect the precious turtle since 1991, news website VnExpress reported Tuesday.

Duc said the filmmakers wanted information about the turtle being removed from the lake for treatment of injuries before it was released back to the lake last year.

“They also want to be introduced to future plans to protect the turtle,” he said.

After considerable debate, the turtle was removed from the lake last year for a three-month period to treat leg injuries it had suffered, and returned to the lake in July, with around 60,000 live fish.

But the once reclusive animal has been emerging above water regularly since then, with experts speculating that hunger and water pollution might be the cause. They surmise that fish stocks in the lake are insufficient and the turtle might be finding it hard to catch them alive.RELATED CONTENT

Hanoi authorities plan to check the turtle’s health and refill the lake with clean water more often.

Duc said the 45-minute film by the Franco-German TV network, which aims to promote quality programming especially in culture and the arts, is a good chance to introduce an “iconic” animal of Vietnam and Hanoi to the world.

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Legendary turtle released back into Hanoi lake

The 169-kilogram female turtle has been identified as a member of the Yangtze giant softshell turtle species, known scientifically as Rafetus swinhoei.

Conservationists say there are only two of the species remaining in Vietnam and two more in China.

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