Posted tagged ‘turtle travails’

Mowing Turtles Down…

December 29, 2012

box turtle– – While engaged in a conservation project to determine how to help turtles cross the road safely, a Clemson University student inadvertently discovered a disturbing fact:  some drivers deliberately swerve on the road, not to miss turtles, but to intentionally hit them. 

The student put a realistic rubber turtle in the middle of a lane on a busy road near his campus, and then watched over the next hour as seven drivers swerved and deliberately ran over the rubber animal; several other drivers apparently tried to hit it, but missed.  When the student sought to replicate his study using a different location road in a more residential area, the second of 50 cars to pass by that day swerved over the center line to intentionally hit the plastic reptile.

The number of box turtles is in slow decline, and a major reason is that many wind up as roadkill while attempting to cross the road for food or breeding purposes.  Turtle underpasses are seen as one possible solution to the problem… 



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