Back in 2008, a turtle was attacked by a shark. It lost its two front limbs, but it was miraculously rescued. Over the past five years, scientists in Japan have spent considerable time, energy and resources trying to figure out a way for the turtle to regain its ability to swim. There were quite a few setbacks along the way, but as it turns out, those efforts were not in vain.

It took plenty of trial and error, but now the French Tribune is reporting that the Suma Aqualife Park has fitted the turtle with new rubber fins. Scientists designed a body suit that is fitted to the turtle and has the artificial limbs attached. Since the fitting, Yu has been swimming with no problem. Some day, hopefully, a new body suit can be designed that’s a little more fashion forward, but until then, I doubt anyone will hear many complaints from Yu.

The 25-year-old turtle, named Yu Chan, was found badly injured in fishing nets five years ago and was taken to the aforementioned Park in Kobe, Japan. After the shark attack, Yu lost half of one of her front limbs and then 1/3 of her other front limb. Of course, any loss of this magnitude would make swimming difficult. So, the task was far from a quick fix.

Now that scientists have proven turtles that have lost the ability to swim can regain it through technology, untold amounts of sea creatures could be helped in the future. Here’s to hoping those who need an assist are able to get it at a reasonable cost.

Image Credit: Dudarev Mikhail



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