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Turtles/tortoises
 1. gopher tortoise
 2. red-eared slider
 3. Florida softshell
 4. Florida redbelly slider
gopher tortoise eating grass
gopher tortoise, Archbold Biological Station, Florida, 2009.
I found this gospher tortoise eating grass on the edge of the road. It looked like a little cow grazing.
gopher tortoise


gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus), Archbold Biological Station, Highlands County, FL, USA. 2006.

turtle eating lily
turtle eating water lily flower buds, Shark Valley, Everglades, FL, USA.
florida softshell
Florida softshell (Apolone ferox), Anhinga Trail, Everglades, FL, USA, 2007.

This large female was leaving the water to look for a place to lay her eggs.  The late morning temperature was high, but she still wanted to make an attempt.  Not even numerous tourist passing her could change her mind.  However, once she was on the hot asphalt of the walkway, she decided to return to the water.

Large female Florida softshells have 75-90 cm long shells.
gopher tortoise archbold experimental station
puncture wounds in shell of gopher tortoise
gopher tortoise, Archbold Experimental station, Florida, USA, 2009.
First tortoises are rather common at Archbold.  I typically see at least one sometimes two or three each time that I go to Archbold. this tortoise had puncture wounds in its shell.  I am not sure where the puncture wounds came from, if it was an animal, degradation from a parasite or microbe, or some kind of accident.
florida redbelly
Florida redbelly slider (Pseudemys nelsoni), Shark Valley, Everglades, FL, USA. 2007. This was a huge individual at about 45 cm in diameter.
turtles & iguanas
Green iguana (Iguana iguana) and possibly a red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta elegans), Crandon Park, Key Biscayne, Miami, FL, USA. 2007. This tree was very popular basking spot. Five iguanas and three turtles were using it.

turtle
Florida redbelly slider (Pseudemys nelsoni), Everglades, FL, USA. 2007.



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