Nearly 18 months ago I left behind my beloved box turtle project in Pennsylvania to come to the Oregon coast. Sadly, this portion of Oregon has no native turtle species so when a box turtle walked into my life I wasn't quite sure what to make of it. I'm trying my best to see it as a big coincidence, but there's a little part of me that believes she found me for a reason. That she knew I would appreciate her and was deserving to be her friend because of the countless days I've spent admiring, studying, and protecting her species. I like to think she knew I was special because I love turtles and have been so sad without them in my life.
This box turtle is a robust female found wandering through the coastal spruce forest. She is obviously a pet that someone has either released or lost, and would likely not survive on her own in this ecosystem. When I found her she was very light and dehydrated and has spent the past few days basking in a water bowl and eating raspberries.
I've always been against keeping turtles as pets, mostly because most pets are actually wild captured animals and wild turtles populations are in decline. But for this lady I have no choice. Even if she was plucked from the wild, I couldn't release her unless I knew the exact location. So, now I must work to create her an outdoor turtle pen so she can live the most natural life possible....with the addition of my culinary supplements. I'm happy she found me.