Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Look, Mom, There's a Turtle in Our Fire Pit!

Our first night at the lake,
we had a fire.
Made s'mores, played with sparklers,
the whole nine.

The next morning,
this little lady,
(we later researched)
that she felt the warmth from the fire the previous night
and decided it was a good place to lay her eggs.

The girls did the research on line with their friends
and discovered that she was a snapping turtle.
We learned that  most turtles come ashore to lay eggs.
 She dropped eight eggs total.
The hubs was fiddling with camera settings, so that it was not so dark.
But since this was the first egg we captured being released, I figured I would share ;-)

 Sometimes, you just have to shoot on auto ;-)
 Second egg...
 She dug a hole.
Do you see how her tail guides the eggs down the hole?

 Another egg...
 Covering the hole...

Walking away...
She is such a good mommy,
she turns back...
to say good-bye?
to check on her eggs?
I would love to know what is going through her turtle brain!
Heading back toward the water...

 See ya!

Since these were snapping turtles,
which are not very nice
and bite through fishing nets and can hurt people and animals,
it was quite the dilemma.

Since this was in our fire pit,
it also presented a dilemma.
Do we move them?
Do we leave them and not have any more fires?

We had to research how long the incubation period is.
Anywhere from 8 to 18 weeks.
And the mamas can hold their eggs for up to TWO years (can you imagine?)

The jury is still out on what to do about these eggs.
Any ideas?