The sunny, spring weather has brought the turtles out from their winter hiding places. I was inspired to go looking for some this morning after seeing lots and lots of turtle photographs published by a fellow blogger. I waited until the sun seemed worthy of turtle-warming rays, then went to a county park to scout for turtles.
I found some eastern painted turtles soaking up the sun on a partially submerged tree trunk near the edge of the pond. I planned to get closer to them, but they immediately splooshed into the water before I could even try to approach. They took turns popping their heads up from the water in various locations as they checked to see if the coast was clear. Finally, the boldest turtle swam over to the tree trunk, climbed up, stretched out his head, and returned to his sunning.
There were at least three or four other turtles who continued their surveillance from the water, with their periscope-like heads randomly popping up to survey the log.
Eventually, another turtle decided it was safe and began slowly approaching the log. He cautiously climbed up the side and then froze for a few moments.
After a period of looking around, he finally relaxed his position and lowered his body down onto the log. Then the turtle extended his head into just the right angle for soaking in the maximum amount of sun.