Abandoned pet turtles at Overfelt Gardens facing tough time

Abandoned pet turtles at Overfelt Gardens facing tough time

Abandoned pet turtles in draught-hit California's Overfelt Gardens may soon perish as the level of water in the park's ponds is declining fast and the decorative ponds are really low on the priority list of water distribution authorities.

A number of people, particularly children, in the area buy small turtles as pets. Once these turtles outgrow the cute phase, they are abandoned in public waterways.

Raising concern over the future of these turtles, Tiffany Namwong from the locality, said, "The turtles are not going to survive. If I'm a turtle, how am I going to get out of there and cross the street? I'd get run over!"

The Golden State's drought has reached a point where water distribution authorities must make hard decisions. Marty Grimes, a spokesperson for the Santa Clara Valley Water District that manages the water at the park, admitted that ponds were kept very low on the priority list this year.

Gilbert Castro, president of the California Turtle & Tortoise Club, said there was not a single city or county in the entire state that was not suffering due to the problem.

However, some experts are seeing the situation as an opportunity for native turtles to eliminate aggressive, non-native species. The abandoned turtles at Overfelt Gardens are pond sliders from the southern parts of the United States.

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