Rare turtle almost ends up as soup
One of only four Vietnamese turtles left in the world almost ended up as soup, when it was swept away by a flood, captured by a fisherman who could have eaten if for his dinner.
Instead, the 150-pound animal returned to its lake Wednesday and conservationists celebrated their deal with the fisherman — the turtle's freedom in exchange for about $200 and two new fishing nets.
Douglas Hendrie and other conservationists had been trying to find the turtle for two weeks after floods washed the animal out of Dong Mo Lake near Hanoi.
The turtle is part of the extremely rare rafetus swinhoei species, and the only one who lives in that lake.
Fisherman Nguyen Van Toan found the turtle early Wednesday and demanded $1,400 in exchange for its release, arguing that a Hanoi restaurant owner had offered him 30 million Vietnamese dong ($4,800) for the animal.
Turtle is a delicacy in most Asian countries.