Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Chickens lay eggs, and so do Turtles

For those of you who don't know my husband is park ranger and one of his main jobs is mowing. He has a large deck (72") Toro Zero Turn that gets the job of mowing large areas quickly. And since he's out in the park, he gets to see all sorts of wildlife. The deer, and their off-spring, birds, etc.

Yesterday he came across something unusual. Not that he's never seen turtles before. In fact he has rescued them from precarious places, such as the road, and moved the slow-moving reptile before a car or truck comes along.

Yesterday, his discovery brought him back to the house to get me, excitedly telling me he found a large turtle in a sort of depression in the grass where he was mowing. Spotted it as he went past it. I grabbed my wildlife book and my phone to take a picture.

We got there and I was certain this was a female laying eggs, and in fact, she was. We went and got one of the other park managers and he came out and got a snap of it and sent it to yet another park manager who was the expert in identifying the types of turtles. I thought it was a map turtle. Turns out it's a "red-ear slider", and she was laying eggs in the hole she had dug.  She was laying quite a few of them, too. Below are my pictures of her in action. I somehow snapped one of the egg falling in. How cool is that?


We eventually left her to her business, as I'm sure she's never had an audience before. Dennis later reported that when he went to check things out, you'd never know something had laid eggs there. There's just a dirt patch, and it was packed down pretty good. Hopefully the eggs will remain unmolested. Raccoons are some of the culprits which might dig them up. And when they hatch the little guys have to go through the gauntlet of attack by birds, etc, before they find refuge in the tall prairie grass about twenty feet away.

November is for...

Ah. Yes. Some writers do the NaNoWriMo thing. I don't need that nudge, thank you. I've never needed it. And it wasn't even in ...