Sunday, September 8, 2013

On a Mission

Every morning this week I have said "Good morning" to this Three-Toed Box Turtle (Terrapene carolina triunguis) hangin' out beneath the bird feeder enjoying scattered birdseed. They prefer juicy food, like flies and cantaloupes, but our month-long drought left her world devoid of fruits and flying bugs, so she ate what was available. Early one morning I saw her crossing the lane toward the deep woods that cover the south-facing slope, her color matching some of the leaves already fallen, and I understood that she was fattening herself for a long sleep through the cold weather in a south-facing burrow she's now selecting or decorating. We humans do much the same, calling it football season, or good baking weather, or Oktoberfest. In case we aren't fat enough, we crawl out again in late November and call it Thanksgiving.

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