Hello to all my friends out there! I hope you are taking care of yourselves and each other in these difficult times. I’m looking forward to the day when my human friends don’t have to worry anymore about the virus called Covid-19! (If I could, I would banish it right now!) Until this passes, please take good care out there.
I love having made so many friends through my sidekick, Elaine A. Powers, and today I’d like to introduce you to Zoe, a Sonoran Desert tortoise. She’s a female who knows her territory and stands her ground. (I just love that in a tortoise!)
I don’t want to tell Zoe she’ll never be the star I am, of course, but take a look at my You Tube channelon your small screen at this beauty in her habitat and learn about what it takes to be a tortoise in the Sonoran Desert.
I started out my biology career wanting to be a marine biologist. Even though I ended up as a laboratory researcher, I’m always looking for interesting creatures when I visit the ocean. I never know who I’m going to write about in my next fun science book!
One group of animals I always enjoy seeing are starfish. They come in different shapes and colors. Starfish are echinoderms, a diverse family of marine invertebrates. They are found in all oceans and none of them can live in freshwater. Of course, starfish are not fish; the name comes from their star-like shape. Starfish usually have five arms but some have up to 40 arms!
One thing all starfish have in common is their radial symmetry. Their body can be divided into five equal parts. Amazing. Don’t worry that they’ll become asymmetrical if a predator bites off an arm–starfish have the ability to regenerate their arms.
Starfish themselves are carnivores. Their mouths are located on the underside of their bodies (the anus is on the top side). Interestingly, a starfish has two stomachs, one of which can be pushed outside the body to allow it to swallow the large prey that can’t fit in its small mouth.
I like playing with the multitude of starfish feet–feeling the tube feet crawl on my hand. The feet are used for moving, of course, but also for catching prey. While the feet are moving the starfish, its bony skeleton with its spikes and thorns provides protection from above. Which is a good thing, because starfish have lots of predators.
These are some of the beautiful starfish I have encountered.
Someday, I might write a book about starfish. For now, I’ll just have to know they run into the sea turtles you’ll see pictured in the book below that I wrote about the Hickatee turtle. It teaches the physical traits and differences between the land-dwelling Hickatee and the ocean-dwelling sea turtles.
Or, learn all about another fellow ocean feeder, in this Lyric Power Publishing workbook full of activity sheets about the Brown Booby–the large seabirds who live on only one island in the world.
Hello, everyone! It’s me, Curtis Curly-tail, at your service! Well, actually, I’m here today for my friend, Trevor. He asked me to share his rant with you.
Trevor is a Box Turtle. He recently posted a selfie at the beginning of a literacy school event on social media. Numerous comments were added about what an attractive tortoise he was. Tortoise!
Trevor isn’t a tortoise–he’s a turtle! He was incensed, upset, incredulous, even! He obviously has red eyes. Don’t people know that all tortoises have black eyes?
And, Trevor says, he’d sure like to see ANY tortoise try his trick below! Only turtles with lightweight shells and webbed feet can climb screen doors!
Trevor has stomped his little feet (with turtle-webbing between his toes) and insisted that Elaine Powers, his caretaker and author of fun science books, write a book entitled Don’t Call Me Tortoise! Elaine wrote Don’t Call Me Turtle! for Trevor’s roommate, Myrtle the Red-foot tortoise, because everyone kept calling her Myrtle the Turtle, driving her nuts!
I have to back Trevor on this one. Personally, I think Elaine should’ve written Trevor’s book long ago. Am I going to have to push Trevor onto her foot, so he can transmit the turtle-poem to her, like I transmitted my story?
Nah! She’s got this! Right, Elaine? Right?
Below is the fun, rhyming book, Don’t Call Me Turtle!, that tells about the many differences between turtles and tortoises. Geez, the little ones love that book! (Learning with fun rhymes helps with keeping busy.)
P.S. — It’s only right for all the Trevor’s in the world that Don’t Call Me Tortoise! is on its way, too.
And, because a lot of kids are unexpectedly home from school, check out the fun turtle and tortoise activity sheets and workbooks at Lyric Power Publishing!
My friend Trevor Box Turtle is a true ambassador for turtles. He enjoys meeting both children and adults, and they love seeing a turtle that can fold up into a box. But Trevor is so friendly that when asked to close into a box, he doesn’t like to fold the hinge in his plastron to demonstrate how it works. He always wants to be out, taking part in the action. He usually will fold up half of himself, but soon his head is back out, taking everything around him in.
Sometimes, Trevor gets paid for his visit. No, not with money–what would a turtle do with money? Trevor takes his payment in snails! Back when he lived in New Jersey, Trevor’s favorite food was the slugs he found outside. He would croak happily as his face became covered in slime.
When he moved to Arizona, he didn’t have a source for slugs. It’s just too dry in the Sonoran Desert. Instead some people grow snails inside their homes. These are the people who generously share their snails for Trevor. So, the next time you wonder what to give your Box Turtle as a present, think snails!
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Strictly Necessary Cookie should be enabled at all times so that we can save your preferences for cookie settings.
If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again.