Saturday, March 17, 2007
The swamp and Ira, patron saint of all turtles
We've been riding through the wetlands for the past couple of days and have seen a range of amazing wildlife. We've seen gators, snakes, turtles, and tons of water birds.
We've also been intruduced to Nutria, which look like ROUS (rodents of unsual size). They look like rats, but are bigger than a household cat.
I have also come to find out a new fact about Ira. He is the shepherd of turtles. The roads are littered with turtle roadkill, which looks very different then regular roadkill. Regular roadkill looks like a pile of flesh, soft blobs on the streetside. Turtle roadkill is very angular because of the broken shell, while pink guts spilling in all directions. This bothers Ira very much. He makes us stop about 4 or 5 times a day to taxi a mid-road turtle across to safty.
Here Ira is trying to save a snapping turtle which was responding by trying to snap off his fingers. He is using the bottle to try and get it to pull its head in. It didn't want anything to do with this shepherd. He had to leave this one on the road.
There is the old Chinese saying that if you save someone's life, their life becomes your responsibility. Ira is currently responsible for about 20 little turtle lives, and the numbers are growing everyday.
Posted by Andrea at 4:44 PM