Farewell to Ella, our Community Turtle


Last month, I wrote a story about saving Ella, a 15-year-old snapping turtle from Patterson Creek.  She had woken up early from hibernation because of the warm weather.  With no available food, she was on he verge of starvation and dehydration by the time I rescued her.  She has been in a rehab centre for turtles since April 6th under the care of loving volunteers from Turtleshelltortue.

I am an educator, but even more, I have a passion for all life.  It has been truly exciting to have been part of Ella’s journey back to health.  Sharing her journey with the children and families of this community has also been truly rewarding.

It took her one month from the time she was rescued to the time when she willingly took her first bite of food without having to be tube fed.  Not only is she eating fish, chicken and worms now, she is eating all of the time.  She has become quite mobile, swimming and moving around on land, getting stronger every day.  When someone enters the Rehab, she is up and looking around to find out who it is, sometimes even instinctually snapping!  Suzanne and Michelle at Turtleshelltortue have surely put their hearts into helping Ella to become a strong and confident turtle again.  It is with their love and support, along with our best wishes, that Ella has become part of all our families.

In recognition of their work, on June 5th, the familes at Acorn organized and held a park party at Glebe Memorial Park, with all proceeds going to Turtleshelltortue to help fund the good work that they do.  There was a used art sale, food, bake sale, games for the children, bookmarks, cards and turtle pendants designed by a local artiest, just to name a few.  More details are on Ella’s Facebook Page as to how you can also help.  Although Ella the snaping turtle couldn’t come to visit us during the park party, many of her friends did, with a Ministry of Resources representative.

Hopefully, Ella will have been released back into her environment at Patterson Creek in the fall.  We wish her a safe journey and a long life.  Although we will miss her, we all understand what it is like to go home and that she still has her own life journey to live.  It is much like what we do for our children throughout their lives.  Because she came into our lives for this short time, she gave us an opportunity to observe her, to understand her ways and to have respect for her place in our world.

Safe journey Ella!