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Expert explains why she has buried her pet turtles in the backyard for more than 20 years

"We hope you enjoyed turtle day!"

Pet owner explains why they bury turtles in the backyard

Photo Credit: @dogdogcatcatnoodle / Instagram

An Instagram video posted by dogdogcatnoodle (@dogdogcatnoodle) earned more than 900,000 likes and delighted viewers, all for good reason. 

In the video, the poster holds a shovel and excitedly announces, "It's turtle day! Let's dig up the turtles!" They then go on to dig up two adorable turtles from their yard while explaining, "Our box turtles, Jelly Bean and Squirtle, have been buried in the backyard for the past five months hibernating through the winter, but it's finally spring and time to dig them up!"

They then further explain that their family has been helping their captive-born box turtles hibernate like this for more than 20 years. The video ends with an adorable shot of the two turtles and an exclamation of: "We hope you enjoyed turtle day!"

This kind of hibernation in reptiles is called "brumation," and in the wild, box turtles will bury themselves up to 24 inches deep. 

Box turtles like those shared in the video are known for their dome-shaped yellow and orange shells and are native to North America, where they are considered an indicator, or keystone, species. Indicator species represent the health of the environment, so if they are doing well, it's safe to assume the environment is also doing well. 

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As a species, box turtles are not endangered, but they are classified as vulnerable. Because of this, helping them to survive, even in captivity, is extremely beneficial.

They help control populations of insects, slugs, and other pests, which helps preserve the health of a local ecosystem like a yard or garden, so helping them to survive is a win-win.  

As evidenced in the comments on the video, viewers certainly did enjoy turtle day. 

"This was the happiest little piece of news I've stumbled upon in a long time πŸ’β˜€οΈπŸ€£" said one. 

Another shared their delight at both the turtles and learning something new, saying, "Ok. I never realized turtles hibernate! This video just makes me so happy." 

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