It seems that I have been moping around – lots of time and almost no blog pages.
Please respect the pictures and do not use them without permission. Please let others know that there are a few nature images available at ontheroadwithdec.com to help pass the time. Thanks.
So here we go!! This is a collection of images from the last couple days. We are confined and restricted like everyone is (or should be) but can still get out in the car or in the yard. The pictures are explained in the associated captions. These are just some of what a naturalist notices from the car window. Enjoy – more to follow.
The image that opens the page is of a Snapping Turtle. This is a big old turtle (probably over 30 years old) out looking for a mating companion. The males will move around to locate females and the females will eventually lay eggs in a hole that she digs to a depth of about ten inches. The eggs are smaller than ping-pong balls and will all hatch at about the same time ten to twelve weeks later.
In years when there are lots of skunks the nest holes are routinely dug up and the eggs eaten. In years where skunk numbers are low (often due to distemper) the eggs hatch, and survive, in good numbers. Thus many turtle populations (all turtles bury their clutches) level off for a few years as the skunk population remains high only to surge when the skunks are reduced in number.