Siddhartha Pati

Farmer Discovers Rare Yellow Turtle That Experts Haven't Seen Before

If one of your friends is into a niche subject to the point that they could be considered in expert in it, you've likely noticed that nothing excites them more than showing them something they've never seen before.

Whether it's some unreleased work by an artist they obsess over or a creature that they never knew existed, there's something immensely pure about the way they geek out once you bring it to their attention.

And while I obviously can't say I've been there for every major discovery, I think it's a safe bet that this enthusiasm doesn't change even when you're a professional, serious scientist.

With that in mind, it's hard not to want to be a fly on the wall when one incredible turtle was discovered.

While he was working the fields on his farm in the Indian village of Sujanpur, Basudev Mahapatra noticed something that truly stood out.

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As CNN reported, it was a bright yellow turtle. After he decided to bring it home on July 19, he handed it over to local forest officials.

Since they were just as puzzled as he was, they contacted the Association for Biodiversity Conservation.

But even their executive director Siddhartha Pati had never seen a turtle like this before.

Siddhartha Pati

Nonetheless, his organization was able to tell that it was an Indian flapshell turtle and that its unusual look was the result of albinism.

As he said, "It is a congenital disorder and it is characterized by complete or partial absence of tyrosine pigment. Also, sometimes a mutation takes place in the gene sequence or there is a deficiency of tyrosine."

Normally, the Indian flapshell turtle looks like this.

Reddit | awkwardtheturtle

As we can see, there can be some patches of yellow on its face and yellow spots on its shell under normal circumstances, but they apparently dominate the turtle's whole body when there's an absence of tyrosine.

As CNN reported, this turtle is common in India, as well as in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Myanmar. It's known to eat frogs, snails, and aquatic plants.

Although an albino flapshell turtle seems to be a brand new phenomenon in India, there has only been one other instance where an albino turtle in general was found within the nation.

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And this discovery marks the very first time that one has been discovered in the state of Odisha located on the eastern side of the country.

If you're wondering where this turtle is now, however, I'm afraid that nobody has an answer for you.

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As Pati told CNN it's standard operating procedure for the Association for Biodiversity Conservation to release the animals they come in contact with back into the wild and that's precisely what they did in Odisha's Balasore district.

h/t: CNN

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