Herpetofauna - One Life's List

Midland Painted Turtle
Chrysemys picta marginata

Johnson Co., Illinois.  May 19, 2001

My first marginata was far from any water - it was laying eggs in the middle of a trail a hundred feet or more up a steep, rocky slope, far from any water.  Why some turtles travel so far to lay their eggs is a mystery to me - is it to disperse the young, or to hide them from predators, or some other reason?

The turtle pictured here was found on a grassy bank next to a roadside ditch, a good place to find turtles up close sometimes.  The other alternative is 'turtle spotting' with a pair of binoculars as they bask on logs out on the water.

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