While taking a walk to the beach with Tim Arlington, we noticed a little turtle sitting motionless on the sandy path. Given that it was 30 yards from water, it was apparent that this was a newly hatched baby. We then found the nest, containing mostly empty leathery egg shells. One partly-opened egg remained, buried beneath the sand, which was rock-hard given the lack of rain lately.
These were baby Eastern Painted Turtles, the predominant species in Thayer Lake. We took the babies to the water’s edge, helping the second turtle out of its shell. Both babies were weak and dehydrated, so they were set within the thick shoreline plants, just a few inches from the water. That should have kept them out of view of the hungry birds.