I’ve done a lot of hiking and biking this summer. We have spotted quite a few turtles on our outdoor adventures in the last few weeks so I thought I would share a few:
This little Eastern River Cooter was in the middle of the Katy trail. Not a good spot, and we narrowly missed running it over with our bikes. After taking this picture we put this little one in a safer spot off the side of the trail. The Katy trail is 237 miles long, the longest “rails to trails” trail in the US. It runs through Missouri and is a nice place to bike or hike. It was a hot day when I took this picture, and despite all the rain and flooding along the Missouri River this year, the trail was quite dusty as you can see by the layer of dust this turtle has on it. In order to get at clear shot, I put my ISO to 100 and used a fast shutter speed in hopes of cutting down on the amount of light. I put my f-stop at 7.1 so that I would get as much detail in the turtle as possible. For this shot the background didn’t need to be in focus.
This second turtle was on a hiking trail at Onondaga Cave State Park which is also in Missouri:
This is an Western Painted Box Turtle. It was right on the edge of a trail we were hiking. It was shady here so to get the photo I increased my ISO to 640 and had a fairly slow shutter speed of 1/60. It worked in this particular picture, but as I was trying to take other photos with more of the turtle and less of the grass, he made his getaway:
So, despite their reputation as being slow animals, a turtle really can move when it is motivated to do so!
I am not an expert at identifying turtles, so I used this site to help me. It was kind of like playing 20 questions the turtle version. Do you think I got them right?
This post was written in part as a response to the weekly theme at Where’s My backpack? this week featuring motion.