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Franco
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Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 9:21 pm
Location: New Jersey

I found a turtle! Threat to my Garden?

I went outside to check on my plants and whatnot and first i saw 3 deer playing way back by the traintracks (my backyard has a fence and then some woods and then the tracks) and I think nothing of it because they are always around. Then, I walk to my garden and i see something crawling out and it's a turtle!! I couldn't believe it, I was freaking out. He was so cute i picked him up and he got really scared so i put him far away from my plants. -Now, I have blueberries, 3 different types of peppers, tomatoes, and carrots, could the turtle have been eating something?

Here's a picture of it
[img]https://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a388/DaRealFranzy/TURTLE.jpg[/img]

Newt
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Joined: Tue May 25, 2004 10:44 pm
Location: Maryland zone 7

Franco, I am jealous!! Not a threat at all. Looks like an Eastern box turtle. They don't eat much in the way of your plants, but are great at eating slugs and bugs!
https://www.fcps.k12.va.us/StratfordLandingES/Ecology/mpages/eastern_box_turtle.htm

Scroll down here. There's 5 pages all together of wonderful critters.
https://www.eitangrunwald.com/NJ/NJp2.htm

You might be interested to know about The New Jersey Herptile Atlas, headed by the New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife’s Endangered & Nongame Species Program (ENSP). It is a quantitative survey of all reptile and amphibian species throughout the state. Maybe you could contact them and let them know about your wonderful discovery.
https://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/99hanews.htm

Newt

constance
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Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2006 12:28 pm
Location: Southern Illinois

turtles

We live on the edge of a small town, with fields and forest to our south and west. There is also a pond nearby, so we frequently find turtles. I've never seen any garden damage from them except for a few bites taken from tomatoes that are near the ground, which I imagine they eat for the water content.
I discovered at a very early age that they will bite if you poke your finger in the shell trying to get them to come out and play. :o
We get by with a little help from our friends

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Franco
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Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 9:21 pm
Location: New Jersey

Thanks a lot both of you, and I think I'll take your advice not poking it haha.

decam0
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Joined: Sat Jun 24, 2006 12:03 pm
Location: London, England

Is a turtle the same as a tortoise? If not, how do you tell the difference?
Delia

Newt
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Joined: Tue May 25, 2004 10:44 pm
Location: Maryland zone 7

Delia, what a good question. From this site at the San Diego Zoo:
https://www.sandiegozoo.org/animalbytes/t-turtle.html

[quote]Turtle - Spends most of its life in the water. Turtles tend to have webbed feet for swimming. Sea turtles (Cheloniidae family) are especially adapted for an aquatic life, with long feet that form flippers and a streamlined body shape. They rarely leave the ocean, except when the females come ashore to lay their eggs. Other turtles live in fresh water, like ponds and lakes. They swim, but they also climb out onto banks, logs, or rocks to bask in the sun. In cold weather, they may burrow into the mud, where they go into torpor until spring brings warm weather again.

Tortoise - A land-dweller that eats low-growing shrubs, grasses, and even cactus. Tortoises do not have webbed feet. Their feet are round and stumpy for walking on land. Tortoises that live in hot, dry habitats use their strong legs to dig burrows. Then, when it’s too hot in the sun, they slip underground.

Terrapin - Spends its time both on land and in water, but it always lives near water, along rivers, ponds, and lakes. Terrapins are often found in brackish, swampy areas. The word terrapin comes from an Indian word meaning "a little turtle.â€

decam0
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Posts: 142
Joined: Sat Jun 24, 2006 12:03 pm
Location: London, England

Thanks Newt!
I'm looking again at that photo of the turtle.....does it have webbed feet?

Dedee
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Joined: Sun Jul 02, 2006 6:21 pm
Location: Muskogee, OK

:P I have a turtle in my back yard it only comes out from under the shed in my back yard early in the mornings about 5:30am till about 7:00am he just meanders around munching grass. I think it is cute that my cat just watches it walk around I guess it moves so slow theres no challenge in the cats mind. I have often felt like I should set it outside my fenced yard but I have heard when u move a turtle out of its territory that they walk in a straight line the rest of there lives :roll: How true it is I don't know. The turtle has not damaged any thing to my knowlage. I worry it is lonely in my yard however he is safe here.



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