My friend Mia recently informed me that October 21st is designated as National Reptile Awareness Day, so I wanted to mark the occasion by sharing one of my favorite reptile photos. As a wildlife photographer, I’m always looking for opportunities to appreciate and celebrate the incredible diversity of reptiles that share our planet.
To celebrate this year, I wanted to share a photo I took of a beautiful Box Turtle earlier this year while visiting the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma.
Box turtles are some of the most recognizable turtle species in the eastern United States. They get their name from their distinct box-shaped shell that allows them to completely enclose themselves for protection. Unlike some other turtles, box turtles are mostly terrestrial and spend most of their time roaming forests and fields rather than in the water.
Box turtles are omnivores and have a varied diet including insects, slugs, fruits, flowers, and more. They play an important role in the ecosystem by dispersing seeds and controlling insect populations. Unfortunately, habitat loss, fragmentation, and human collection are some major threats facing wild box turtle populations.
I feel very fortunate to have spotted this beautiful box turtle meandering through the refuge. Getting the chance to observe and photograph incredible reptiles like this in their natural habitats is a true privilege.
Thanks to Mia for the reminder about this special day to appreciate reptiles. Learning about native species in our own communities is a great way to celebrate National Reptile Awareness Day. With greater awareness and respect, hopefully we can find ways to better protect and coexist with these fascinating creatures.
- Date: 5/24/23
- Time: 8:04 AM
- Camera: Canon EOS R5
- Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM
- ISO: 5000
- Aperture: 10
- Shutter: 1/800
- Exp. Comp.: +1.0
- Lens (mm): 500
- Program: Manual