Tuesday, July 5, 2016

This Tortoise is Full of Surprises!

The other afternoon, I went outside to see if Pistachio was in or out of his burrow - if he's out, I don't run the sprinkler, but if he's in - I feel free to do so.  (Blueberry opted to stay inside because she's lazy I had treats on the counter and she needed to guard them.)  I saw Pistachio inside his burrow, looking out.  To my surprise, when I looked down, there was a cat on the other side of the gate, lying there in the shade (like she owned the place) and staring right at Pistachio!  I let out a small gasp and the cat looked at me.  I calmly stated, "You need to think about leaving now.", and it took off.  I'm not sure if this cat is friend or foe to Pistachio.  It didn't seem to be hunting him, just kind of hanging out with him.  

I then turned on the sprinkler to the side of the enclosure and went back inside.

I was a little paranoid about the cat coming back and possibly harassing Pistachio - so about an hour later, I looked out the window and I didn't see a cat, but I did see the thermometer that is normally inside the burrow had relocated underneath the tree. Seemed odd.  So I went outside to check things out more fully and what should I see?  Pistachio emerging from the side of his enclosure that was being watered - he was soaked!  He had purposely walked into the sprinkler to cool off!  

It was so funny - I can't even get Blueberry to go into the sprinkler in the summer unless I throw treats in it.  I have since googled this phenomenon and learned that a lot of captive desert tortoises enjoy the sprinkler in the summer - mostly when there is cloud cover.  In the wild, they will wait for the monsoon rains - so the sprinkler is the captive desert tortoise's monsoon until the real monsoon arrives.  

Some people may be of the opinion that tortoises are boring - but I disagree.  They have personalities and likes and dislikes like any other critter and I am always learning new things about Pistachio. His going into the sprinkler definitely showed me his fun side.  

Maybe one of these days I will be able to get some video footage of him actually in the sprinkler.  I wonder if he dances around or just calmly stands there and lets the water rain down on him...

"That water was so refreshing."

He had a little dirt on his back from digging in his burrow that turned to mud.  I was able to wipe some of it off.

I think Pistachio was in the middle of the Hokey Pokey when I took this picture.

"What is with you taking my picture every time I am out of my burrow?  You have a sickness, human."