Thursday, July 10, 2008

Turkle! (Updated)

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present for your viewing pleasure, a rescuee from the middle of the road, Charlotte the box turtle:

Currently residing in a very fetching cardboard box on the exclusive back porch of Chez Gyre, refusing to snack on the most succulent lettuce and tomatoes that our refrigerator could produce, and overturning her water platter in protest of her accommodations.

Isabel will take her out to the lake tomorrow, and let the boys release her there, where there are significantly fewer cars.

I believe Charlotte is a she because her eyes are brown, not red. She's named for Charles Darwin, who did some work with the Galapagos tortoises, upon which subject we stumbled while discussing whether box turtles are true turtles or tortoises, since their shells are rather taller than many swimming turtles we have around here.

Update! So Charlotte had a cunning plan. When she knocked over the water platter, it soaked into the cardboard box. Eventually the cardboard was soggy enough for her to dig her way through. She escaped onto the porch, whence she dropped a story to the gravel below without apparent harm.

In the meantime, we discovered that Isabel's young cousins actually had found and rescued a turtle in similar circumstances, so they were not so turtle-deprived as we thought.

So the upshot was we decided to release Charlotte into the woods behind our place, with some trepidation as to foxes and hawks and things, but presumably those are not new threats to her, on the assumption that she was wild and not domesticated.

So crawl free, little turtle! Crawl free!


Sherry said...

May she live long and prosper.

MSW said...

Well, Wikipedia, that great font of knowledge, says that while box turtles are mostly herbivorous as adults, they refuse to eat their greens. So maybe she was holding out for something a little more palatable. And the younger ones are more carnivorous, so depending on how old she was, she might have been holding out for some protein. That, or she was just picky about the way her salad was fixed.

Either way, it sounds like a fun little encounter, and while her release wasn't quite a scheduled event, I hope she does well out there.