One of my favorite things about spring in New England is watching the painted turtles lay their eggs. Our pasture is near a pond and the turtles take (for them) a marathon journey into the grass to dig holes for their eggs.
I love the turtles. I love how ancient they look. I love the vivid colors under their shells and I love their sheer determination.
It makes riding in the field a bit of a challenge, however. Right now the grass is pretty long so those turtles come up quickly. The best strategy is to create some patterns through the grass and then stick with them. Freedom pays them little mind but he does seem to take care not to step on any.
Today one intrepid turtle outdid herself. She not only came up over the hill, she went through the grass pasture, through the turnout and into the sacrifice area. When I arrived this afternoon she was busy digging a hole outside one of the mare’s stalls. Fortune stood spellbound, snorting and watching the turtle (which was the size of a salad plate) with fear in her eyes obviously afraid to leave her stall.
I scooped up the turtle and put her outside the fence, admonishing her to lay her eggs in a safer place. After all, when those little turtles hatch, we don’t want them crawling around with the horses!