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Vietnam's elusive sacred turtle is finally captured

EPA

Conservation workers watch a turtle swimming after been captured at Hoan Kiem lake in Hanoi, Vietnam on April 3. The turtle's health is in serious condition and requires treatment, according to local media and veterinarian experts. Residents believe the giant turtle brings luck because it is said that a giant turtle lent King Le Loi a magical sword, with which he was able to defeat the Chinese invaders in 1427.

Back on March 8, we chronicled the attempts to rescue a giant turtle from Hanoi's Hoan Kiem Lake. Today those efforts paid off, as AP reports:

An ailing giant turtle considered sacred by many Vietnamese was captured in a lake in central Hanoi on Sunday by rescuers who hope to give it medical attention.

Thousands of onlookers cheered at Hoan Kiem Lake as the mammoth creature was pulled in after escaping capture last month.

It took 50 workers two hours to net the turtle and lure into a cage which was then transported by boat to a small island that was recently expanded and equipped with a small pond, known as the "turtle hospital," said Ha Dinh Duc, who has studied the creature for 20 years and considers himself its caretaker.

He said it will be kept on the island for medical treatment, but it's unclear how long it will take.

Thousands cheered in Hanoi as more than 50 workers lured a giant turtle into a cage so veterinarians can check out the health of the turtle thought to be 100 years old. TODAY.com's Dara Brown reports.