BUZZ reporters visiting Sai Kung Market found a turtle on display. We asked the stall holder if it was for sale, wondering if it was bound for a soup pot. No, we were told. It’s a pet called Bobo.
Mei Yuen, one of the reporters, listened to the stall holders chatting about the bloke photographing the turtle. She said based on their conversation it may in fact be a pet.
But what a way to treat a pet! “Bobo” was lying in an inch and a half of water in a plastic tray so small it could barely move around.
At home I asked the wife, a regular at Sai Kung Market. She said animal trading goes on every day. People buy turtles or fish and make themselves feel good by freeing the creatures. It used to happen with pigeons until the practice was banned. Freeing turtles often goes wrong, she said, because sometimes they are released in an unsuitable habitat. This animal trading is most common at festivals, especially Buddhist ones.
There are many saddening sights for the sensitive. Fish swimming in tanks of filthy dead water. How do they survive? Bloodied chicken bodies, fresh from the chopper, hang about. Creatures, living and sentient, bound so they can not move (the mind wanders to the seafood restaurants). Horseshoe crabs abandoned on the footpath. Misanthropic feelings flare.