Southern California Woman Finds Turtle Taped to Helium Balloons Stuck in a Tree

This blurry image shows home video of the turtle (right) hanging from the balloons in a tree. (Image: KGTV screenshot)

OCEANSIDE, Calif. (TheBlaze/AP) — It’s not exactly the usual firefighters called because the cat is stuck up the tree scenario, but rescuers were called in to retrieve another animal: a turtle duct taped to a batch of helium balloons.

Now Humane Society officials in a Southern California city are trying to determine who duct-taped a turtle to a bunch of balloons and sent it soaring

Chanelle Wright told KGTV-TV Tuesday that she and her neighbors found the turtle taped to the green and red balloons caught atop a eucalyptus tree in Oceanside on Sunday.

Wright said she called the Humane Society and Fire Department, who arrived about an hour later. Firefighters were about to rescue the turtle with a ladder truck when a gust of wind came and blew it to the ground. It was unharmed.

Here’s more from KGTV on the situation:

“We look up and there’s green and blue balloons up there,” said resident Chanelle Wright. “He was just swinging his arms trying to get out of it. Somebody had taped him to the balloons.”

Wright told 10News, “I called the Humane Society to try to get the fire department out here, but it took about an hour for everybody to actually show up.”

In the meantime, the turtle hung dangling in the wind. That’s when Joel Rabago’s mother got out her camera and started taking video of the hanging turtle.

“When something like this happens, she always takes the video camera, no matter what it is,” Rabagos said.

[...]

“It’s animal abuse. If you didn’t want the turtle, give it away, take it to a pet store,” Wright said.

Watch the report:

Humane Society officials say they are keeping the turtle while they investigate. Wright says she was horrified by the animal abuse and plans to adopt the turtle if no one claims it.

KGTV reports if the person who taped the turtle to the balloons is found, he or she could face animal abuse charges.