Baby 2-headed turtle thrives at Massachusetts animal shelter

Rare two-headed terrapin turtle is alive – with its six legs – at Birdsey Cape Wildlife Center in Massachusetts

BARNSTABLE, Massachusetts – A rare two-headed diamond turtle is alive and kicking – with all six legs – at the Birdsey Cape Wildlife Center in Massachusetts after hatching two weeks ago.

A threatened species in the state, this turtle feeds well on bloodworms and food pellets, according to staff at the center. The two heads work independently, seeking air at different times, and inside its shell are two gastrointestinal systems to nourish both sides of its body.

The turtle originally came from a nest in West Barnstable which researchers said was in a dangerous location and needed to be moved. After hatching, the turtles from these so-called “advance” nests are sent to various care centers to be watched before their release in the spring, the Cape Cod Times reported.

Center veterinarian Pria Patel and other staff will continue to monitor the turtle in the weeks to come. They hope to perform a CT scan to find out more about his circulatory system.

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