Saturday, September 15, 2007

My Baby's First Birthday!

You might remember, last October, I bought two little baby turtles from an apple-doll old woman in Chinatown? Sure you do. Though one of them didn't survive six weeks with me, the other thrived. But anyway, judging by their size when I bought them, I figured they were a month old; and so this month is their birthday!

Claudius, the survivor, has been a surprisingly entertaining pet. He isn't cuddly, in fact he hides from me most of the time. He doesn't even like being held or played with. He's like a fish, but with a larger repetoire of movement and mood.

Anyway, in honor of his birthday, and the fact that I was cleaning his tank and so had to disturb him anyway, I took him outside for a little celebratory photo shoot.

Claudius is quite huge, now... according to my research, they grow about an inch a year, so I was under the impression that he should now be about two inches long; however, he is three and a half inches long (just the shell, not counting his neck or tail extended). The Red-Eared Slider (to which variety Claudius belongs) usually grows to be about five or six inches long on the shell, and live ten ten to twenty years. So if all goes well, he'll be with me for a while.

I didn't realize until quite recently that he moves pretty fast on land. Sliders are so called because they like to bask in the sun most of the time, but if any other animal happens by, they slide into the water post-haste; so one doesn't see them just walking around on land all that much. So I was surprised when Claudius finally got sick of being photographed and took off for the flowerbed at a rather alarming speed. I just caught him before he reached the asparagus fern, which I don't think he'd have liked much (it's prickly, you know).

So anyway, I'm very pleased that Claudius has lasted this long, and I look forward to another decade of his rather diffident company.

Now I want to see how long the crowntail betta I bought two weeks ago is going to live. I'd show you a picture of Mr. Fandango, a gorgeous creature of irridescent peacock blue with brilliant magenta fringe, but he's at the office... he lives on my desk and everyone in the office is enchanted by him.

And speaking of enchanting...

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