Three-toed Box Turtle Walking On Rocks

Presented here is an image I captured of a Three-toed Box Turtle as it sauntered across a cluster of rocks. These rocks are now commonplace on the tour road at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma, having been introduced within the last few years. Despite the new impediment, turtles like this one still manage to traverse the path, albeit at a slower pace. In fact, on most of my visits to the refuge, I’ve witnessed turtles crossing the tour road.

During one such drive, as I navigated my way between the Sandtown parking area and Reeves Boat Ramp, I nearly missed this Box Turtle due to its coloration. It’s a timely reminder to take things slow and keep an eye out for our shelled friends.

Three-toed Box Turtle Walking On Rocks
Three-toed Box Turtle Walking On Rocks

After pulling over, I alighted from my vehicle and carefully positioned a beanbag on the road to provide a stable support for my camera and lens. For this particular shot, I opted for my trusty Fujifilm X-T3 camera, outfitted with a Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II lens, coupled with a Fringer EF-FX Pro.

What I love about this photograph is the eye contact the Turtle appears to be making with me. However, I regret that its back legs are only partially visible, hidden away inside its shell. This was due to my having to move around the turtle to capture the desired angle. Although it didn’t retreat entirely into its shell, I can only assume that my movements were somewhat unsettling. When the Turtle eventually resumed its journey, I didn’t have the ideal angle I was hoping for, but I’m content with the resulting shot nonetheless.

Camera Settings

  • AV Mode
  • Aperture: f7.1
  • ISO: 800
  • Shutter speed: 1/210
  • Exposure Compensation: -0.3 
  • Focal Length: 400 mm

Wildlife Photography Tip

Look for and photograph the small animals like turtles not just the big animals. Everyone likes to photograph Deer and other large animals but I think all of them are interesting.

1 thought on “Three-toed Box Turtle Walking On Rocks”

  1. You are right! These little critters are interesting. I have never seen one of these before. Awesome capture!

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