"I can't wait to get out fishing!" exclaimed my brother as we chattered away on our way to my lakeside cottage up north. Just then I slammed on the brakes! "What's wrong?" my brother cried. "A turtle!" I yelled as I leaped from the car and raced to the side of the road. I grabbed the huge turtle just as another car was rapidly approaching behind us. Saved! Rushing back to the car, we examined the huge reptile. "It's a box turtle" Ben insisted. "And look, its been hit before." Nope, not a box turtle - I was sure. But what kind was it? "Remember when we tried to raise a box turtle as a pet and it got away after one day?" Dan mused. "Crawled right under the chicken wire and it was history! (My mother was a kindergarten teacher and avid amateur scientist so we had lots of pets as kids...snakes, a praying mantis, turtles, an alligator, a horned toad, frogs, fish, many guinea pigs, and rabbits). As soon as we got back, I checked my mom's old pocket guide, the Golden Book of Reptiles. It was a Blandings turtle! Rare, endangered! Wow. Habitat? Woodlands, vernal ponds, marshy, swampy areas...hmmmm. Not lake turtles. Okay, but behind the neighbor's barn was a huge wetland and swampy area teeming with frogs, insects, snakes and other critters. Perfect! After one last look, we released him into his new, safer habitat.
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