[Homestead] Morning entertainment, country style
jeanne13 at earthlink.net
Fri May 9 10:56:14 EDT 2008
Doncha just love having time to watch a turtle!!!! The joys of not having to go to work away from the farm anymore!
Thanks for the observations.
North East TN zone 6
----- Original Message -----
From: Gene GeRue
Sent: Friday, May 09, 2008 9:57 AM
Subject: [Homestead] Morning entertainment, country style
From the kitchen sink window a terrapin undulates downhill over the
mulch of the back garden. It appears to be heading toward the baby
lettuce. Pauses with head stretched high like a periscope--the head
reminds me of Spielberg's ET. Is it a girl sniffing the air for a
boyfriend, or a boy inhaling for the irresistible perfume of a girl?
Lettuce spared, it changes direction and goes back up the slope to the
sod. Across the sod behind the hibiscus that is pushing up new shoots.
Now back down into the garden, perhaps that is where the breeze comes
from, angling across through the young pepper and tomato plants to the
excavation where a hydrant was installed yesterday. Threads its way
between the hole and the new hose bib manifold out onto the top of the
stone wall. Peers over the edge like a child looking at a dropped toy
on the floor below its crib. Decides against a dive. The garden
rejected, it moves along and off the end of the wall and onto the sod,
goes around the corner and disappears, still searching.
One could learn a lot from a terrapin.
The three-toed box turtle, also called terrapin, known to biologists
as Terrapene Carolina triunguis, has been reported to live as long as
138 years in the wild. I want to know who kept track. It is also said
that an age of eighty to a hundred years is normal. Common life
stoppers are vehicles and collectors. Three-toed box turtles prefer
wooded areas, but are also found in lawns and pastures. In Missouri,
courtship--this I have not seen, and mating, this I have photographed--
takes place from late April well into summer. Most egg-laying takes
place from mid-May to early July. A female digs a three- to four-inch
hole in a patch of loose soil. Three to eight elongated white eggs are
laid, covered with dirt and abandoned. I have occasionally happened
onto one of these nests, typically in leaf litter near an oak tree. As
is the case with all turtles, the eggs and the young are on their own.
It is noteworthy that this parenting style has been successful for
thousands of years.
Now the next time a city friend asks what on earth do you country folk
do for entertainment you will have turtle watching as an additional
Homestead list and subscription:
Change your homestead list member options:
View the archives at:
No virus found in this incoming message.
Checked by AVG.
Version: 7.5.524 / Virus Database: 269.23.11/1422 - Release Date: 5/8/2008 5:24 PM
More information about the Homestead