Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Exotic Tortoise at Key Vista - December 22, 2014

As I got out of the car, I heard a familiar rustling in the bushes.  When I went to investigate, I found an unfamiliar creature.  At first, from a distance, I thought it was a box turtle, but then I noticed it was not a turtle but a tortoise.  The only tortoise we have here is the gopher tortoise, and this was definitely not that, so a quick online search for " tortoise red spots on foot" led me to Red-footed tortoise, a South American tortoise common in the pet trade.  So, obviously he should not be out here.  I put him in the car and left.  Later, I had the opportunity to give him to a science teacher/ herpetologist.  He said it was a good thing I took him out of the wild because he would have frozen to death over the winter.  Just another reason why pets should not be released into parks.

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