Saturday, June 13, 2015

Moving Day For The Turtles

From our back porch,  if we look through the trees down the hill,  we can get a glimpse of the fish pond.  We spend a lot of time down there at the pond.   All of the grandchildren enjoy fishing along with Papaw.  I enjoy watching, but am not much of a fisherman.  We have had some fun birthday parties and picnic lunches and dinners down there.   We love it too when our older grandsons bring their friends fishing.

The pond is a peaceful place to come and enjoy the outdoors.

One day recently my husband came back up the hill from feeding the fish and said he had spotted about twenty-five turtles sunbathing on the old fallen trees in the pond.

Every time I go down there I too see lots of turtles sitting on the fallen trees in the pond.  As I approach they all jump off the logs and splash down into the pond.  Turtles have adorable little faces and it always amazed me the way they are able to entirely close up in their shell and protect themselves.  Not too many wild creatures can do that!

We enjoy walking down to the pond in the evening to feed the fish.  My husband recently restocked the pond with very young fish.  It had been many years since the pond had been restocked and he wants to make sure those young fish have enough to eat.

If you would like to see the blog post about restocking the fish pond you can click on the following link:       

In the below photo you can see my husband walking around the pond throwing out the fish food. 

As the food splashes in the pond you can immediately see the fish coming up to the surface of the water.  You can see the little circles in the pond from where they are eating the food.  It is fun to watch them.  Sometimes we can spot a large catfish as his whiskers rise above the surface of the water.

In the below photo you an see the fish at the surface of the water as they enjoy dinnertime.

If you look closely in the below photo, in the center of the photo in the water,  you can see who else is coming to dinner ... Yes, he is another recent visitor to the pond.  He is a baby alligator who probably wondered into the pond from the large lake a couple of miles away.

Every time my husband feeds the fish he can count a lot of little turtles swimming around in the pond. One evening he lost count of all the turtles he saw.    That is the evening he decided there were way too many turtles in the pond.

From what we can find out pond turtles lay their eggs twice a year and can produce from 5 to 13 eggs each time.   So it was no wonder to us that there were so many turtles.

My husband decided it was time to give some of the turtles a new home.  He decided to get some ham hocks from our local grocery store to put in a trap to lure the turtles into the traps.

He put the ham hocks into the traps and positioned the traps close to the shore. 

I am not quite sure how the traps work, but as you can see the little turtle did decide to come inside to have some delicious bites of that ham hock.  As you can see he has been eating away and looked like he has been enjoying his captivity.

My husband transferred the turtles to the back of his truck for a ride down to the large lake a couple of miles from our home.  Little did these little turtles know they would be moving from a small little country home pond to a huge beautiful lake that had been in existence for hundreds of years.

He first let them out of the cage to stretch their legs a little bit.

They are so adorable!

Well!  Here they are after their journey in the back of the truck.

In the below photo is one view of this amazingly beautiful lake that the turtles will call their new home.

If you would like to know more about this beautiful lake you can read more in a blog post from the past.  Just click on the link to read more:  

As you can see the little guy is ready to go.

And when the door was opened he knew just what to do and where to go.

In the middle of the below photo you can see him heading right for the lake water.

And in this photo below there he goes into the water.

We took several turtles to the pond and with each one of them as soon as the cage door was opened they knew just what to do and headed straight for the lake water.

And there he goes ... to his new home.

This lake is called Lake Iamonia and is located about nine miles South of the Georgia State Line.  As you can see it is a very beautiful lake and will make a very nice new home for all of the turtles.

We counted the turtles moved from the pond down to Lake Iamonia.  There was a total of 54 turtles moved over about a three week period.   I am sure they all met up together here in the lake and will be happy in their new home. 

When we go down to feed the fish we still do see several turtles in the pond which is OK.  We did not want to move all of them, but there were too many for them to have a happy home.

The first day of Summer is rapidly approaching on June 21st.  It feels like Summertime around here already with school getting out last week and graduations having taken place.  The days are definitely getting warmer with frequent afternoon rain showers.  I think it is time for a picnic down at the pond.

Wishing you a beautiful beginning of Summertime wherever you may be.

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