80 turtles block runway at NY airport! | world | Hindustan Times
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80 turtles block runway at NY airport!

world Updated: Jul 10, 2009 13:34 IST

Several flights have been delayed at New York's Kennedy Airport when some 80 turtles blocked one of the runways, a media report said.

Officials believe the turtles were probably looking for their mating partners amid the spawning season, the New York Post reported.

Collisions between turtle and planes are quite rare, with only five such cases have been registered at the airport from 2000-2008.

"It's not unprecedented, but it doesn't happen a lot," airport authority spokesman John Kelly told the newspaper Thursday.

A pilot spotted the turtles when his aircraft ran over some of the reptiles, which had crawled onto the runway, which is surrounded by water on both sides.

It took 35 minutes for the wildlife officials to remove the diamondback turtles, about 78 in numbers, and release them back into the wild.

The brief shutdown of the runway resulted in flight delays.