Muddy Feet !

I had a stroke of luck late this afternoon. A friend sent me a text message to come as quickly as I could with my camera four blocks from my home.  I was thinking it was going to be a flower in full bloom to photograph or that the pelican was back on the lake.

To my surprise it was a turtle that had apparently wandered across the street from Lake Ripley. It was busy making a hole in a section of muddy grass with it’s back feet to bury her eggs!  It was my first experience to view this and I wanted to share with all of you.

When I was in elementary school, my mother let me have pet mini turtles. The were purchased at the local Woolworth’s Store. I have always loved turtles so today’s surprise was a wonderful highlight to my learning more about them.

With a little research I learned this:  A few weeks after mating, the female moves to high, dry, open ground to dig a shallow nest. Using only her hind legs, she digs out a small hole, just 2 or 3 inches deep. The nest’s depth is limited by the length of the female’s hind legs. Solar radiation provides the heat for incubation.

Temperature determines the sex of the brood. Clutches incubated from 73 to 81 degrees produce mostly males. If the incubation temperature exceeds 83 degrees, mostly females are produced.

If you have been following our posts, you know that Gavin rescued a turtle from heavy traffic last summer while in Minnesota.  I encourage you to re-read his post or if you missed that post, here is the link called Minnesota Calling (part 4).

I learned by watching Gavin not to pick up the turtle I was viewing making a hole today. Thanks Gavin for that lesson!
Until next time,



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