Wildlife Wednesday... May 23 is #WorldTurtleDay
Celebrate the ultimate slow and steady land reptile with some interesting facts. 1. They can smell with their throats. Like other reptiles, tortoises detect the faintest of smells with the vomeronasal organ, or Jacobson's Organ, on the roof of their mouths. Instead of flicking their tongues, they pump their throats to circulate air through the nose and around the mouth. 2. They can't swim, but tortoises can hold their breath for a long time. They're extremely tolerant of carbon dioxide. It's a good thing—tortoises have to empty their lungs before they can go into their shells. You'll often hear them exhale when they're startled and decide to hide. Don't Touch!
If you see a tortoise in the wild, it is important not to pick it up. 3. Like a young child who may wet his pants when afraid, a tortoise will "void" its bladder if frightened. This could have life-threatening consequences for the animal if it is not able to replenish its water supply. Handling wild tortoises is illegal under the Endangered Species Act. The only reason for picking one up is when the tortoise is on or near a road and is in imminent danger of being struck by a vehicle. If you must move one, grasp it firmly with two hands, keep it just a few feet above the ground, and move it off the road about 50 feet in the same direction in which it was headed. Then place it gently back on the ground (preferably in the shade). Please keep a safe distance from all wildlife. Remember you are a visitor in their home. #jtnpa #joshuatreenationalpark #joshuatreenps #tortoise #gopherusagassizii #wildlife #desertwildlife #wildlifephotography #nature #natureshots #natureaddict #allnatureshots #nature_lovers #nature_perfection #nature_brilliance #nature_shooters #nature_seekers #naturephotography #keepwildlifewild #respectwildlife #wildlifewednesday #worldturtleday