How a turtle held up dozens of flights at an airport near Tokyo

Loggerhead sea turtle swimming in Caribbean Sea

Photo: Getty Images

Slow and steady is said to win the race, but it could also mess up flights. A turtle held up dozens of passengers and flight crews at Narita International Airport near Tokyo, Japan, on Friday (September 24th). Officials say the reptile weighed just over four pounds and was a foot long-- it was spotted by a pilot just before his plane was scheduled to take off. Air traffic control ordered all flights to pause while staff safely captured the turtle and checked the runway for other anomalies, prompting further delay. Ironically, one of the planes that was halted by the incident was an All Nippon Airways Airbus A830 which happens to be decorated with blue sea turtles. 

Meanwhile, speaking of turtles....

A large loggerhead sea turtle rehabilitated at the Florida Keys-based Turtle Hospital was flown by private plane Sunday to permanently reside at a conservation facility on South Padre Island, Texas. Matthew the Turtle, named for one of her rescuers, had been hit by a boat. Her injuries mean she can no longer safely exist in the wild, so some volunteers stepped up to take her to the facility where she’ll spend the rest of her days.

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