Sunday, May 20, 2012

Turtles of Central Park

A number of New York Turtle & Tortoise Society members met up this Saturday, May 12 in Central Park. Purpose: to look for turtles!

We were led by turtle conservationists Pete Warny and Jay Westerveld, who first took us to Turtle Pond, right by the Delacourte Theater.

  Jay (at left) and Pete.

It was a beautiful, warm day and dozens of turtles were basking
right below the observation deck.

Turtles were also hanging out with a friendly cormorant.

Climbing to the top of Belvedere Castle, which overlooks the pond, we saw even more turtles, mostly red-eared sliders.

From there we walked over to Bethesda Fountain and Central Park Lake and saw turtles galore.
The sad part of the story is that most of these animals are pets that have been abandoned by their owners when they grew too large, or the owners grew tired of caring for them.  Still, these are NYC survivors!