Mar 29-08

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2008: March: Mar 29-08
Artist the Painted    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Ashley Byykkonen
Watch me float    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Ashley Byykkonen

Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 12:02 am:

This is one lucky turtle, having become a member of Ashley Byykkonen's family when she found him as a "hatchling" on the playground at school and brought him home to live. Ashley promptly named him "Artist", since he's a Painted Turtle and proceeded to make him comfortable in a habitat with plenty of water (since Painted Turtles actually eat under water) and rocks to climb on for sunning himself. As he grew, his habitat continued to grow too and gradually he made his way to his present home, an aquarium. In the wild this time of year, Artist would be hibernating by burrowing his way into the mud, but since he can't do that right now, he just stops eating so much and spends a good deal of his time at the bottom of the aquarium. When a family member comes near his tank, he sticks his head and neck out looking for a possible treat. Ashley likes to take him out, so he can walk around and often times he'll find his way over by the wood heater. One time they forgot he was "out" and had to do a flashlight search of the house to find him. It's hard to tell from the pictures, but he's about 3 inches long and 2 inches wide and the family figures he's about 3 or 4 years old.

Ashley's Mom told me that she's quite the rescuer of creatures. When she was a little girl, she used to go to school with a bug net sticking out of her backpack and some type of container inside, just in case she'd find something interesting on the playground at recess. Her aspirations are to be either a Marine Biologist or perhaps a Zoologist someday. I'd say she has a good start on that road already!

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 12:57 am:

Good girl Ashley, go for the science!!! There's just not enough women in science these days, let alone ones that are interested.....

The Dr. and I were eating in a restaurant one day when a little girl in the table next to us told her mom "I love science, I want to be an astronaut someday". Her mother said point blank, "Oh honey, your a girl, and girls don't do those sorts of things!" Needless to say, I had to restrain the Dr. so she didn't slap that woman silly........

By Mr. Bill (Mrbill) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 08:34 am:

Do we know that Artist is a boy?

There is a simple way to tell; a long thread-like tail is a male's, a stubby tail like the end of your thumb, is a female's.

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 08:44 am:

Ashley sounds like a very interesting girl. You really wouldn't know that Artist is that small. He looks much bigger than that. It sounds as if Ashley has her future all planned out. Good for her.

By Brooke (Lovethekeweenaw) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 08:54 am:

I like turtles, the little guy and I look for them when we hike.
How did she keep him alive so long?

By Alex "UP-Goldwinger" (Alex) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 09:09 am:

This looks like an Antarctic turtle to me. It probably floated in on that frozen wave.

By John Preisler (Jpreisler) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 12:42 pm:

Painted box turtles rule. Down here on the prairie, we used to have them by the dozen scurrying through the yard after heavy spring rains.

Biggest turtle I ever did see was a giant snapping turtle easily 3' across, sniffing the surface air from the water at Seney.

By John W (Jwahtola) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 06:44 pm:

Our son is a 5th grade teacher in the Huron Valley School system. When he started teaching in a Catholic school in Kalamazoo he got a red ear slider turtle for his classroom. The students would take her outside to walk at recess and they named her Dwight D. Eisenhower. Ike for short. Ike went with him to the Charter school in Battle Creek that he taught in before the moved to the Huron Valley system. Ike would be in the classroom during the school year then summer in another teacher pond untill she decided one summer to run away to have a wild home.
Turtles are nice for young people to watch.
Mrs W

By kay Moore (Mskatie) on Saturday, March 29, 2008 - 11:06 pm:

Mrs W. What a lovely story. I'm glad the turtle was finally "running" free.

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