Friday, August 10, 2007

the hare only went 15 yards

The staff at Roanoke's Mill Mountain Zoo feared the worst. Had someone stolen their Burmese mountain tortoise to make soup? It was unlikely to have climbed out of the enclosure on its own. Fortunately a zoo visitor spotted the missing tortoise 20 yards away and all was well again. Zookeepers still think somebody lifted the creature over the wall.

Meanwhile in Knoxville, a less rare species was out on the town for a supervised visit. I was excited to see a Western Box Turtle from the Knoxville Zoo at the Mayor's First Day Festival yesterday. The first turtles I ever knew were the Eastern Box Turtles I would see at my grandparents' summer cottage in Noyac. Both varieties of box turtle have the distinctive hinged plastron that creates a tight seal. However the Easterns have much more colorful shells and skin. It was an Eastern Box Turtle that I saved from my pool almost two years ago.

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