Rufus Discovers Male Spotted Turtle

Male Spotted Turtle (Clemmys guttata) #1220

Male spotted turtles gradually continue to emerge from woodland swamps and wetlands where they have spent the long, long winter burrowed under mud, scum and debris.  They’re heading to spring mating aggregations in local bogs.  Turtle Journal’s Sue Wieber Nourse found the first SouthCoast spotted turtle on April 1st and the second male on April 2nd.

Rufus the Turtle Dog Patrols Grassi Bog Path

This afternoon, Rufus the Turtle Dog led the Turtle Journal search as she patrolled the Grassi Bog path with the temperature poking into the low fifties.

Fee-Fi-Fo-Fum, I Smell the Whiff of Turtle Swamp Scum

While her eyesight may not rank on the same scale as an eagle, no other creature surpasses her canine sense of smell.  With tongue leading the way, Rufus clearly detected the odoriferous scent of a spotted turtle that had just spent six months buried deeply in swamp and pond scum.

Rufus the Turtle Dog Alerts the Team

Confirming the turtle as she approached within eyesight, Rufus alerted the team of her discovery and stood guard until we arrived on scene.

Carapace and Plastron of Male Spotted Turtle #1220

Male Spotted Turtle #1220 was “naturally” marked by dings along his carapace marginals.  Today is the first time we’ve observed this specimen, which measured 4.25 inches long and weighed 7 ounces. You can clearly identify his maleness in the plastron photo on the right, spotlighted by his large, thick tail, the concavity in the middle of his abdominal scutes, and his dark drab colored neck.

Comments are closed.