Have a turtle story to share? Pass it along and we’ll post it on our blog. This story was submitted by a local resident who helped return baby turtles hatched at the KTTC to the wild.

Saturday, September 11, 2010 was release day for baby turtles 1, 2 &3.Painted Turtle Mom had been found injured on the road in May by good friend Laurel McCauley and transported to the Kawartha Turtle Trauma Centre. Mom did not survive her injuries however the Centre x-rayed MOM and discovered 9 eggs.

Eggs were extracted from Mom and 3 little Turtle babies survived!! As I live in Peterborough, Laurel asked me to transport the turtle babies back to Haliburton to the lake where she found MOM to help with the release. I was so thankful to be part of the turtle rescue/release team!

So we got the call that babies were ready for release on what turned out to be a perfect sunny September Saturday! We also found out that the release happens quickly. Kate from the KTTC told me the babies were feisty and ready to go – she was so right!

Turtle #1 went on the log on the shore of the lake where Mom lived, hunched inside shell then all of a sudden – everything popped out, head, tail, legs and with a little plop, that turtle was off swimming wholeheartedly and happily into the lake …

We were better prepared for release of turtle babies 2 & 3! You will see them sitting on the log also looking out on the lake taking in their first look at freedom! I swear their little heads popped up when Laurel was telling them NOT to go on the road like MOM had!

Turtle babies 2 & 3 did not enter the lake in the same dramatic fashion that Turtle baby #1 did – they kind of slid off the log into the water – however they were very happy to be in the water as well!! And so off they went with the 2 “adopted” human Moms looking on very proudly – one of us (me) a bit worried about that little one swimming off into the lake however Mom Laurel very wisely pointed out that turtles have been doing this for many years! So Mom Jill had to practice letting go ….The whole release process probably took about 1 minute if that!

What an honour and privilege to release these beautiful and magical beings back to the lake where MOM lived. They knew they were home and to see these little turtles experience their first taste of home and freedom was a truly amazing and humbling experience and something I will never forget.

Thanks to friend Laurel for rescuing MOM Turtle! Thank you to Kate and everyone at the Kawartha Trauma Centre for caring about turtles and taking care of babies until they can be released! I will never pass by an injured turtle again without stopping to see how I can help!

~ Adopted Mom Jill N. Jones (photos by Laurel McCauly)