A little surprise amongst the weeds

You know how I've said in the past that I actually enjoy weeding, at least in small doses? If you don't remember here are my reasons: you restore order to a crazy planting bed, you get up-close and personal with many of your plants, it's repetitive and calming, and there's a gratifying sense of accomplishment when you're finished.


Here's another reason to add to the list: you sometimes find things that you'd otherwise pass right by.



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I took a few minutes to pull some weeds from in and around the prairie bed the other day, and as I was clearing the area around this rock, I saw something:


Can you make it out?


How about if I hold back more of the plants and try a longer exposure...


Yep, a tiny turtle!

It's a box turtle -- most likely a three-toed box turtle that was born last year. (It may also be an ornate box turtle -- I didn't want to disturb this one by picking it up.) This year's turtles will start hatching at about this time, but hatchlings are only an inch long or so -- this guy is small, but not that small!


I see adult box turtles once in a while, but they're still rare enough to be an exciting find. Plus any animal that is still in baby form is reason to get out the camera, right?


I pushed the grass back over his hiding spot, although I don't expect him to hang around. Turtles may be slow, but they're certainly not sedentary -- I almost always see them on the move in my yard.

I'm going to have to be extra careful when mowing the lawn or walking around now that I know there are baby turtles around!

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Lisa  – (June 26, 2013 at 8:42 AM)  

Cute! We are on the turtle pass through route, so we see many of them each year. Mostly painted turtles, but a few snappers, too.

danger garden  – (June 26, 2013 at 10:33 AM)  

Baby turtles!!! Some people have all the fun.

Gerhard Bock (Bamboo, Succulents and More)  – (June 26, 2013 at 11:45 AM)  

So cool! The only time you'd find a turtle around here if one escaped from a pet store or someone's house.

Hoover Boo  – (June 26, 2013 at 2:31 PM)  

Beautiful, beautiful baby. Take good care of the little darling!

Alan  – (June 26, 2013 at 7:31 PM)  

I'd love to know where this little guy went. I'm going to be very nervous the next time I mow the yard... which actually might be when this guy is much older, because it's been raining every day. Maybe I'll start attracting snakes with the long grass too? :)

Gerhard: it's a laid-back pet store that lets a turtle escape and actually get out the door!

Danger: said the woman who is (I think) currently on her way to SF for a weekend of garden blogginess? I'll take that trip and you can play with my turtle. I'll even let you do some weeding. :)

Ben J  – (June 27, 2013 at 10:07 AM)  

There used to be huge snappers in the ponds here, but now it seems like the painted turtles are making a comeback. I love turtles!

Alan  – (June 27, 2013 at 10:52 AM)  

Ben: a snapping turtle in my little pond would be a scary thing indeed! I doubt I'll ever see any aquatic turtles here, as the pond is too small and gets too little sunlight.

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