Quietly paddling the Mattaponi River on a cool September morning, I captured this image of a Painted Turtle. Like all reptiles, turtles are cold blooded, so you’ll see them basking in the sun on cooler mornings. They love logs and rocks overhanging the water. There they find a sunny location with a quick escape into the water if a predator, or curious photographer gets too close.
Hiking through a meadow on a sunny, summer afternoon I spotted this beautiful black snake resting just off the hiking trail. In my experience black snakes are fearless of humans and this one was no exception. I got close enough to get this picture with my iPhone and the snake didn’t seem in the least bit interested or concerned.
This little Woodland Box Turtle and I briefly shared a hiking trail in Powhatan State Park earlier this month. Encountering wildlife, even a small, humble turtle, always makes me feel more connected and brings me a sense of joy and awe.
I prompted ChatGPT to write a short story about a turtle and a photographer meeting on a hike and here’s what it came up with.Continue reading “The day I met Tessa”
This Eastern Glass Lizard was hanging out near near the surf on the beach in Duck, NC. I watched for a while and quickly realized it wasn’t a water snake. When it tried to get away from me, it had trouble navigating the waves and wasn’t doing much better traversing the wet sand. Knowing people aren’t very kind to snakes, I felt bad leaving it in the open.Continue reading “Eastern Glass Lizard”
Every summer our yards hosts a number of toads.
A great time of day to spot turtles in the river is at dawn.
Since they are cold blooded the turtles need the warm of the sun to really get moving. Rocks in the middle of the river provide a great opportunity to soak up the sun’s energy in a place where they won’t likely be disturbed.
When I found this Eastern River Cooter warming on the rocks the sun’s rays had just made their way over the trees on the river bank.