Fairly old healthy passive turtles

Recently I helped out a friend who’s doing some work on turtles. We went snorkelling for Elseya irwini and, thanks to calm water and great visibility, tracked down a bunch of them within minutes of entering the water. Just as well, because I’m a total pansy when it comes to cold water.

Irwin's turtle (Elseya irwini)
Irwin’s turtle (Elseya irwini).

Irwin's turtle (Elseya irwini)
Irwin’s turtle (Elseya irwini). The pale head is a distinctive characteristic of this species.

We also went snorkelling for Fitzroy River turtles (Rheodytes leukops), but recent rains in the catchment had caused the river to rise and the turbidity to go through the roof. We gave up on snorkelling and instead went spotlighting at night out of the boat. We managed to see three Rheodytes, but I wasn’t able to get any photos of them. I’ll need to go back for that later.

I also took the opportunity to photograph some little brown skinks, including a lively skink (Carlia vivax) in the front yard while waiting to be picked up.

Lively skink (Carlia vivax)
Lively skink (Carlia vivax). The feint red stripes on his side suggest that this is a male coming into breeding colours. The black thing is a strip of plastic in my front yard.

Lively skink (Carlia vivax)
Lively skink (Carlia vivax). The lack of red stripes, and the presence of the single pale midlateral stripe, suggest that this is a female or a non-breeding male.

Running reptick total: 345

Elseya irwini
Rheodytes leukops
(no photo)

About Stewart Macdonald

I'm a wildlife ecologist living and working in Queensland, Australia. I spend most of my time in the bush finding and photographing wildlife.
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