Rivers till I reach you…


, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Farewell, Aragog, king of arachnids, whose long and faithful friendship those who knew you won’t forget! Though your body will decay, your spirit lingers on in the quiet, web-spun places of your forest home. May your many-eyed descendants ever flourish and your human friends find solace for the loss they have sustained.Aragog‘s eulogy, delivered by Horace Slughorn

Dumbork passed away last night, 9:30 pm, Philippine Standard Time.

Vet said that there was an allergic reaction, since the puffiness only covered the neck and arms (not the lower limbs). Tried to give her antihistamine but I guess it’s too late. I’m just glad that I was with her for the whole day.

I was able to monitor her — puffiness showed as early as 7:45 am. She was able to bask, from 8 am onwards, but by 3:00pm she showed signs of restlessness, going crazy in the tank, going in circles.

Around 5 pm I removed her from the tank for fear of drowning and placed her in the feeding dish. I coaxed her with some pellet, to no avail, eyes are slowly closing, she’s going in circles, and swinging her head back and forth, up and down as if her neck is itchy.

6:00 pm I changed the water in her tank. She was still in the feeding dish but symptoms increased in magnitude. Restless circling every 5 minutes, and then 5 minutes of being still.

By 7:00 pm I feared for the worst. Contacted the vet, told my sister to prepare herself for the worst case scenario.

8:30 pm got a call from the vet to purchase anti-histamine. Vet initially recommended washing Dumbork with a bar of soap (basic solution to counter the acidic effects of the allergy), but mentioned that if the puffiness showed this morning, allergic reaction may have already reached the organs, specifically the throat area. Thought of going to the vet but he leaves very far.

8:45 pm managed to buy anti-histamine and crushed into powder. Inserted some water in a TB syringe and force fed her. Head is already limp, limbs are weak, eyes glazed and half closed.

For 20 minutes I managed to give her 3 shots of the crushed powder (pinhead size), but she’s not swallowing anymore. Moved her from the feeding container into a clear plastic container with no water. Vet gave advice to try again and pray.

9:15some signs of life, tails tucked in the body, limbs retracted; head came up but only for seconds.

9:25 tried one last time to force feed her. Hands shaking so badly.

9:30 TOD. Limbs limp, eyes not responding. When touched, the water made the limps move. Neck very bloated and puffy.

9:30 – 11:30 pm Vigil with my other sister. Made some arrangement and plans. Placed her in the feeding container with small water. Head was downcast. Limbs in normal position, it was as if she was just sleeping.

I did not have the heart to unplug her filter. The constant gargle and drip of water was soothing in my ears.

Today. Woke up at 5:45, thinking and wishing and hoping that it was just a dream.

Mom removed the water from the plastic container. Covered her with sand. Placed her in a red box with her picture on it.

6:45 finally removed/unplugged her filter. The sudden silence was deafening. Lights were off (UVB and heat). Will have to tackle her tank when I come home from work.

My heart is breaking. I’m at work and trying hard not to cry. 3 years.

Will wait for my sister before burying the body. She will arrive on Thursday. Do you think that’s okay? Will she smell/decompose on her own?

Please pray for her and her safe travel to turtle heaven.

DUMBORK (October 14, 2011 – February 9, 2014). You will truly be missed.

Farewell Dumbork


M.I.A. – Snooze Please!


, , , , , , , , , , ,

Hello fellow animal lovers. Special Hi to turtle-keepers out there.

So, we’ve been missing in action for the past months due to a crazy work schedule. No worry, Dumbork is fine and dandy. She sleeps well, eats well, and basks well. There was a brief panic before the holidays, though, when her shell seemed softer than usual. I chalked it up to a useless UVB lamp; it was due for a replacement anyway. After that, Dumbork can’t seem to stop basking (which is good for her).

I will try to post updates of Dumbork in the next few months.

Here is Dumbork on a snooze-fest :))


Do not disturb..

I told you not to. You’ll feel my wrath later.

I’ll keep an EYE on you.

Vet Visit Preparations


, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

It’s that time of the year again — Vet Visit!

For those who forgot. Dumbork have a semi-annual visit to her Vet, Dr. Peter. Last time, due to a mild case of pyramiding, he recommended a vitamin D supplement to be orally ingested.

Now, my pressing concern is the white, soft, powdery-type stain on her last Vertebral Scute. My first inkling is fungus, and it might have already spread to her plastron. I raised this concern to Dr. Peter last year, but he mentioned that it’s just normal.

My goal now is to get confirmation that it is, indeed, a fungal infection. Hopefully early detection and early remedy may help our case.

Here is a picture for reference:

Time for a vet visit

Time for a vet visit









Now, just a written reminder of things to bring during a herp vet visit:

1. Your turtle (Of course!)

2. A box/plastic container with cloth as a lining (if using a plastic container, do not put water inside. The jostling movement while walking or travelling via a car may cause your turtle to drown.)

3. Bottled water (for her to drink while waiting for the vet)

*ours have a 15-minute waiting time, so I let Dumbork roam around and look into the surrounding areas

4. Extra Napkins/Paper Towels

5. Consultation Fee and Extra Money (in case the herp vet recommends additional services or medication).

6. Paper and Pens (I always prepare a list of questions for the herp vet, I always take note of the answers).

7. Extra Food – Dumbork always feel agitated after each herp visit. To calm her down I offer a small treat (half-a-pellet) for good behavior.


That’s it! I will update you of our schedule and post the results. Have a productive week, everyone.



Blurred Lines


, , , , , ,


Wow it has been weeks since I last posted, my apologies, I got caught up with work.


Here’s an update — lately I’ve noticed that Dumbork wanted to sleep in her ATBA area. I have consulted this before and it was mentioned that the water temperature may be too hot  for her to handle that’s why she prefers to remain at the deck. But what concerned me was that she even wanted to go to sleep at the deck.


I have tried to intervene by urging her to go down, even putting her at her spot, but she just goes back up to the top. No worries, though, every morning she still manages to look perky (and hungry) even though we had a late tug of war the night before.


Here’s a picture of a dancing Dumbork!



moves like jagger

moves like jagger


How are your pets?



Hide and Go Seek


, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



It’s been a while since I’ve dropped a new post. Dumork is fine, considering that she’s stubbornly refusing to bask even with her new lights. I’ve changed her ATBA from a dark look into a brighter feel of her area, by replacing the cardboard sheets. I’ve also done an initial clean-up of her tank (replacing the tubes, cleaning the ramp and the resting places, even rinsing put the biomedia).

I plan to clean her whole tank before April ends, and hopefully I will have time to post a step-by-step instruction blog post about it.


In the meantime, we spent Easter Sunday outside basking in the sun. Check out the pics!


Ready, get set, GO!

Ready, get set, GO!

whoops was that my nose?

whoops was that my nose?

that's not me!

that’s not me!

well, that does not look like a turtle's leg!

well, that does not look like a turtle’s leg!

gaaaahh! you found me! good for you :)

On All Things Turtles


, , , , , , , , ,


Dumbork did not have the chance to spend the last weekend under the sun — the sky was gloomy, and the brief bursts of sunlight makes it harder for her to stay in one place (she likes to roam around). However, I have big plans for her this coming weekend, so that her stubborn scutes will now shed, getting rid of the white spots (which I hope is just some mineral deposits from hard water and NOT fungus) and getting a new layer of scutes is of course more beneficial to her.

I am still not happy with the way her shell is forming. I know she had some raised scutes, but she’s stubborn. If I could only force her to bask I would be content. But every night after I come home from work I wasn’t able to see any signs of her basking or going up the ATBA. Maybe I should invest in a motion-activated camera or the kind that record when movement is detected. Maybe my mind would be eased when I know that at least she’s getting some rays, even though artificial, during the day.

Also, I was able to clean the tank of Dumbork. I removed the water, cleaned the tubes, replaced the sponge and rinsed the ceramic rings. I also managed to scrape off the deposits on the sides of the tank at the waterline. I let the water settle in at first so that the beneficial bacteria will have time to colonize in the tank, providing low ammonia, nitrite and nitrate readings.

I wanted to create a paper on proper care and feeding of turtles. Right now I’m trying to contact some herpetologists in the county and I wanted to ask for their opinions and general advice. Next week I am going to provide an outline on the contents of the paper. The paper I have in mind is not an academic one — I do not have enough credentials in herpetology, or even enough experience in turtle-keeping to start with a formal project, but what I wanted was to create a primer if sorts so that fellow turtle keepers would be able to grasp the importance of maintaining a regular care for turtles that are kept as pets.

And since this is a blog about turtle, here’s a picture of one.


What is this on my arm?

What is this on my arm?

NBI Online Clearance under 3 Hours!


, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The main premise is this: You have already applied at the online NBI Clearance Registration, available at their website http://nbi.njis-ph.com/. Just fill out the form, double check all data, and then submit the application. You will be given a registration code, and you can have two options:

  1. Print the Application Form containing the QR code and the Registration Number, or
  2. Save the HTML file if you want to print it later
  • If the website is down, try again and do not give up easily
  • Once you’ve submitted your application, go to the NBI Main immediately the morning after


  • Application Form
  • 2 Valid Ids
  • Php 115.00 for Local Employment

In order to get your Clearance in just under 3, including Travel Time, here are the steps:

A. Do not try to go the NBI Offices near you. Go straight ahead to the NBI Main Clearance Center Building, located at UN Avenue, Manila.


1. MRT3 [North Ave to Taft] – LRT1 [Roosevelt to Baclaran]

  • Board MRT Train bound to Taft, get off at Taft Avenue.
  • Go the Connecting Bridge to Doroteo Jose, and take the LRT Line 1 Train.
  • Get off at UN Avenue.
  • Walk across street (Landmark is the intersection. Nearby stores are KFC and Jollibee).

2. MRT2 [Santolan to Recto] – LRT1 [Roosevelt to Baclaran]

  • Board MRT Train bound to recto, get off at Recto.
  • Go to the connecting bridge to Doroteo Jose, and take the LRT Line 1 Train.
  • Get off at UN Avenue.
  • Walk across street (Landmark is the intersection. Nearby stores are KFC and Jollibee).
  • The MRT2 [Santolan to Recto] Train is more commonly known as the Katipunan LRT Train, for those living near the Ateneo de Manila University, and the University of the Philippines.

B. Go straight inside the building. By-pass all lines, ignore the queue on the plastic chairs, do not line at the “Data Processing Section”. Proceed to the Ground Floor.

C. If a guard asks you, just mention that you’re an online applicant; he/she will direct you to the ground floor.

D. Fall in line for the payment. Usual fee for Local Employment is Php 115.00. Present the application form.

E. Proceed to the third floor, Biometric Section.

  1. Present the application form, receipt, and IDs.
  2. Double-check all data on the screen.
  3. Observe proper protocol in the Image capturing and the Fingerprint Biometrics.
  4. Remember to get your IDs back

F. If your application is “WITH HIT”, come back at a later date as stated.

G. If you application is “NO HIT”, proceed to the printing section.

  • Present application and receipt.
  • Get your clearance on top of the printer.

General tips:

  • Do not be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of people. Tell the guard that you are an online applicant, and he/she will direct you inside the building, on the ground floor.
  • Double-check all necessary requirements
  • Research the place before going. It’s best to know nearest road routes, bus terminals, and jeepney/tricycle stations.
  • Try to schedule your appointment during the middle of the week (No Mondays and Fridays).
  • Bring pens and envelopes.

Here is the list of Pros and Cons for applying at the NBI Main Clearance Station

Pro (NBI Main) Con (Satellite offices e.g. QC Hall)
There is a separate queue for online applicants Some satellite offices combine the Manual Applicants and the Online Applicants (the manual applicants have been at the area the night before)
There are 10 Counters for Biometric Data Processing Coming from Quezon City, the NBI Main office is far
There are 7 Counters for Payment
Lines are moved swiftly, without hassle
The whole process is clear-cut. You won’t stay in a line for long
Place is air-conditioned
Printing Section is fast and prompt

Here is the timetable of the Day

Activity Location Time Number of Hours/Minutes
Travel time from MRT3 to LRT1 Quezon Avenue Station to Taft Station 8:00 – 9:00am 1 Hour
Travel Time from LRT1 to NBI Main Office UN Taft Station to UN Ave Station, NBI Main 9:00 – 9:30am 30 Minutes
Payment (Step 4) Ground Floor, NBI Main 9:30 – 9:31 am 1 Minute
Queuing for Biometrics(Step 5) 3rd Floor, NBI Main 9:31 – 10:00am 29 Minutes
Printing 3rd Floor, NBI Main 10:00 – 10:02 am 2 Minutes
Travel Time from LRT1 to MRT2 Doroteo Jose Station to Recto Station 10:02 – 10:30am 28 Minutes
Travel Time from MRT 2 to UP/ADMU area Recto Station to Katipunan Station 10:30 – 11:00 30 Minutes
Total Time:   8:00am to 11:00am 3 hours

Hope this helped. If you have more questions, visit http://www.nbi.gov.ph/announcement.html or call (02) 5238231.

Plotting Evil?


, , , , , , ,

Minions. Just one word and you will immediately think of those cute, small, and silly yellow creatures from the Despicable Me movie. You will often wonder, what on earth are they talking about? What are they saying? You’ll even try to decipher their words — is there a hidden meaning behind it, or is just a string of consonants and vowels? With their hand gestures and their facial expressions, you can slightly tell the subject of their topic; and with their videos on YouTube, you won’t be able to resist playing their songs again and again ang again, to the point that you will have to download it as your message notification tone or your alarm ringing tone.

Well, that’s what happened to me. I find them so cute and irresistible that when I had the chance to see a Minion Speaker, I cannot keep my greedy hands off it. Thanks to my aunt who saw it first and gave it to me as a gift! And, of course, this post would not be complete without Dumbork – here are the two cutest creatures of my world!

Potato Naaaaa~

Potato Naaaaa~