Is this a turtle, Ryan? It almost looks like a rock. Very beautiful shot! Greetings, Anne
Yes, it's a turtle. It's a box turtle very common to the area, like this one, except much much older. The rings and most of the pattern are completely worn off the outer shell, and you can see many pitted or broken spots, and even what looks like bite marks along the back edge.
The lower shell is hinged to completely close (like a box!). The turtle can open the front gradually, bit by bit, to peek out from inside, and then close up again if it's still not safe.
I found this turtle in the middle of the road on his back. After I carried him into the woods, I waited for 30 minutes and he just barely peeked out. I thought he might be thirsty (I don't know how long he was in the road before I found him) so I went to get a dish of water. I watched from farther away, and after another 30 minutes, his head and feet were out of the shell, but still no movement, just looking around. I came back to check after dinner, and the turtle and all the water were both gone.
Thanks, Anne! Greetings, Ryan
So glad, you saved this turtle, Ryan! He could have gotten run over by a car, if you hadn't found him. Good to know he drank all the water you offered him, so I think he recovered from the shock of lying on his back for some time (who knows for how long!!). Greetings, Anne
I don't know if he was tipped over by accident or maybe by a dog, or if he was put there by some kids. He wasn't really "Shy" as I put in the title, but that sounds much nicer than "Trembling with fear". It was kind of funny, though, a couple times he was about to start moving when a squirrel came by and he closed up again.
Glad to read that the cows hadn't sent the alarm out to the entire countryside re you and your camera Ryan. ;)
Thank you for saving him. :)
I don't think other animals speak "cow"! This little turtle had only one thing on his mind: "What else can go wrong today?" He was already closed up while he was upside down, and I wasn't even sure he was still alive until he cracked open the front of his shell a bit to peek out.
The trouble for animals is that they have trouble telling the difference between humans who turn them upside down and poke them with sticks, and humans who bring them water and ask how their day is going.
For this guy, I'm just happy I found him when I did :-)
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Photo taken in Meramec, MO, USA
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