Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Flippin' Out

Don'cha hate mornings like this?

"Hey, watch out for turtles on your way in. It's like a turtle migration this morning."
She called after only a few minutes on the road, I was still walking Bear and had not left yet.
I was hoping for lots of turtle shots on the way in to work after getting that phone call. It has been all work and no play this week and I was short of fresh photos for PF.
Plus it had rained nicely last night ... FINALLY ...and I figured the critters would be on the move this morning.

As luck would have it, all I found in 20 miles was this poor musk turtle, upended and waiting helplessly for the first predator or big truck to come along.

I was in the other lane when I saw him, but there's not much traffic on this piney-woods road, so it wasn't a big deal to wheel the JEEP around and check him out.

I was dreading a cracked or mushed shell, but he seemed fine.

I suppose he was just tapped by a spinning wheel and sent spinning earlier that morning.

He was frisky and snappy, all good signs to me.
I left him in a roadside ditch with instructions to avoid the asphalt in the future.

This is the second turtle conference I have had this week.

A few days ago, a gopher tortoise was at the road edge, and just about halfway on to the asphalt. It was in the opposing lane on a quiet two-lane road so I pulled the JEEP over until I was in front of the gopher.

I pointed a finger out the open window of the JEEP and said, "NO!" while shaking my hand the way you do at toddler (or a dog named Bear) who is reaching for something dangerous.

The gopher looked up at me, hissed, and turned around towards its burrow high on the road bank.

I drove on.

Mission accomplished.

The parental finger wag ...
I still got it, baby.


Island Rider said...

You crack me up. Glad the turtle wasn't cracked though.

Anonymous said...

Hi FC,

Weren't the rains wonderful?!Unfortunatley, they brought the smoke with them. This reminds me of those fires so long ago.

I went blueberry picking in Earleton today and drove through Keystone to get there. Smoke was horrible in Keystone and then was gone.

Love your new layout. Thanks for saving another turtle. Did you follow up on that vulture?

Good luck with your new school! Lucky kids to get you. AND you get to view the Gulf of Florida every day. Lucky man!


Sayre said...

But have you mastered the Mommy Glare yet?

cndymkr / jean said...

Sayre is correct. I live in fear of the Glare!

rebecca said...

When I was living on Jekyll Island, GA this spring I got a big kick out of rescuing terrapins from the causeway (though of course I only seemed to encounter them when I didn't have my camera with me). Of course, the flip side of that was the one time I actually witnessed one getting hit and killed by a series of cars - that left me deeply upset.

Floridacracker said...

Cathy S,
Me too, I was expecting the worst. I wonder what goes through a turtle's mind when he's upended and spun like a top.
Probably not much, ... I realize we are talking about turtle brains here.

Yes! Wonderful!! Our smoke is from the Goethe fire ... burning since April. It comes and goes with the wind switches.
Thanks for the encouragement!

Sayre and Jean,
Hell no. I am only a level one wizard.

I love diamondback terrapins. It's been a long time since I have encountered one of these beauties. Hooray for you and your rescue mission.
It is painful to see the opposite.
I'm still haunted by an image of an upturned gopher tortoise on an overpass on the turnpike.
There simply wasn't a safe pullover possibility in the bumper to bumper 75 mph traffic that day.
I tell myself that a trooper or game warden could have rescued it and hope that is true.

Anonymous said...

I remember the first Thunder pointed his finger at Due...he turned to me and said "OMG, I've grown my Dad's finger"! Hope all is well at the HQ, heard we were needing some rain, happy to hear we got it!
Word is "dogati" are those shoes for dogs?

Dani said...

I wish Maggie would heed the parental finger wag. She still tries at least a dozen times a day to nab one of The Girlz. And there is no soft mouth hold for her.

robin andrea said...

No matter how much we scold, they keep doing the dangerous thing, don't they? Makes me think they don't understand english, or something. Good rescue!

Thunder Dave said...

Too funny, I didn't know you spoke both turtle and tortoise!

rebecca said...

Funny you mention troopers - supposedly the Jekyll Island state troopers, if they ever saw someone run over a terrapin when they very clearly could have avoided it, would pull the culprit over and make up some excuse to give them a ticket. Loved those guys.

Floridacracker said...

Man, I love those troopers.

Maggi the predapoodle!

I speak sea turtle too.

Chelonians ... can't live with them, can't drive over them.

It happens to all of us.

Julie Zickefoose said...

Bill gave a little fawn who lay down in front of my car a good talkin' to! Made him get up and stumble up the bank after mama.

We were racing into town last weekend, late as always, in two cars as usual. I passed what looked to me like a topsyturvy juvenile box. Picked up the cell, called Bill, who said he had thought it was a gas cap. He turned around while I kept going and yep! it was a beautiful little juvenile box turtle, tiddlywinked and waiting to be smashed. It will live another day.

And both of those were in the same ride! Here's to the ones who pick them up and carry them across. I can't wait to get you a recording of my new box turtle song!


Floridacracker said...

Sweet! I need to hear that song!

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