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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Oasis turtles

Turtles just seem to show up at the oasis whenever there's water. I guess they're just plain old mud turtles.

This turtle likes to sit atop a dead yucca that the June rain washed into the pond.

Now he can survey his shrinking kingdom. Hope we get another big rain soon so the pond won't dry up quite as fast. 


  1. Did you catch those turtles somewhere else and release them to your pond ?

    When the pond dries out, do they bury themselves until next flash flood ?

    Just curious!


  2. I haven't a clue. They just are there. I didn't catch them somewhere else or anything. I guess they must bury themselves when things are dry. Desert reptile life is strange.

  3. How kool. Must be like Tree Frogs in Southern California Chaparral and Spadefoot Toads in dry deserts of the southwest.

  4. I'm actually really curious about how turtles survive in the desert, even at the oasis. Assuming the oasis was basically dry like the rest of the area before you built it, were the turtles there before you started providing water? If not, where did they come from and how did they do it?

    I'm just a birder and not a biologist, but it seems about as plausible as the swallow carrying the coconut to the British Isles in the Monty Python movie. Nature never fails to astound, but this is simply unbelievable.

    Could anyone out there chime in on how these turtles survive?

  5. Andy, it's always mystified me too. I think they're able to travel when the dry arroyos run and find new homes that way. Or else they travel long distances in dry desert land until they find a new home. I have seen them seemingly out in the middle of nowhere. The oasis was bone dry before I started the water catchment system there. I think the flash floods bring them in, but from where is a mystery since upstream from me there's nothing until it rains.