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Turtle Lays Eggs In Ontario, NY (Gallery)

FingerLakes1.com - Photos & Description by Laurie Dirkx, www.lauriedirkx.com
Posted Wednesday, June 8, 2011 @ 12:02 am

On Monday morning in Ontario, NY...

This painted turtle was spotted in our yard digging. I camped out with a chair and my camera. The whole process of digging, laying eggs, then covering them was about 4 hours. First thing she did was to use her bladder water (as it's called) to moisten her digging spot. She would then alternate left and right hind legs to dig. Once a claw full of soil was ready to be removed she would lift that leg out, release the soil simultaneously as her other leg went in to continue the digging.

She laid four eggs. Breeding maturity is from around 6 years of age through to about age 16, though they can live upwards to 50 some odd years. Or so I researched. As she was covering her eggs one foot would tamp while the other grabbed more soil to continue covering. The covering took a fraction of the time of the digging. The egg laying was about 5 minutes. Her carapace (top shell) was about 6" long.

What a privilege to have witnessed this!

Turtle Eggs

Turtle Eggs

Turtle Eggs

Turtle Eggs

Turtle Eggs

Turtle Eggs

Photos by Laurie Dirkx, www.lauriedirkx.com

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