BRITISH COLUMBIA

Reptile Guy Mike Hopcraft Seeks Public Donations For Bigger Facility

01/02/2014 10:52 EST | Updated 01/23/2014 10:52 EST

Mike Hopcraft's Abbotsford reptile rescue centre holds so many turtles that if he doesn't move to a bigger facility soon, he is going to have to start euthanizing them.

In a YouTube video posted in December, Hopcraft, also known as "Mike The Reptile Guy," outlines his need for a bigger space.

Hopcraft says that the red-eared slider turtles are the most common reptiles brought in to his facility. The current 1,300 gallon pond can only hold 75 turtles, once they hit that cap, they will either have to start turning needy turtles away, or euthanize some of the older, unhealthier ones to make room for new turtles. At the time when the video was show, the pond housed 70 turtles.

"People buy them when they're tiny little turtles; they don't realize how big they get," he says in the video. "Usually they buy them for the kids and the kids lose interest once they start getting bigger." Hopcraft says these turtles are very dirty and generally live for over 50 years—which pet stores often neglect to tell their customers.

Hopcraft has set up an indiegogo page, called Ralley for Reptiles, that he hopes will inspire the public to donate and help him (and his reptiles) relocate.

He is looking to raise $75,000.

"I am now in a situation where I am quickly running out of space but the animals keep coming in," Hopcraft writes on his donation page. "With the exotics industry only growing, so will the number of animals needing homes."

In its first year alone, Hopcraft's facility took in over 240 reptiles.

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Turtles!