Flights briefly delayed at NYC airport after 78 turtles emerge from bay, crawl onto runway

Turtles crawl on runway, delay flights at JFK

NEW YORK — A runway at New York City’s Kennedy Airport was shut down Wednesday morning after 78 turtles emerged from the bay and crawled onto the tarmac.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey says grounds crews rounded up the wayward reptiles in about 35 minutes and deposited them back in the water, further from airport property.

The shutdown disrupted flight schedules, though, with delays climbing to nearly 1½ hours.

Pilots reported the first turtle sightings at around 8:30 a.m.

The Port Authority identified the turtles as Diamondback Terrapins. They appeared to be about 8 inches long and weigh 2 to 3 pounds each.

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