With spring a new inhabitant arrived at our biological pool. For some time now we have been wondering about cut leaves of aquatic plants floating in the pool, a phenomenon that usually does not happen. And, approaching the pool, someone was making sudden jumps, fleeing from the bank into the depths of the water. We were unable to detect who he was, because he lived so clandestinely and with great caution.
Yeah, we had a suspect. Because frogs jumping in the water cause another sound and another type of wave, this we knew from experience. But until we got to make sure weeks went by. On a beautiful April day I sat by the biological pool without much activity, read a book and ate a snack and saw what I liked to see. On one of the rocks on the bank, well exposed to the sun and close to the gangway, I detected a juvenile tortoise! He was sunbathing and his shell shone in the light. And it was exactly this sparkle that caught my attention. It is a specimen of the Mediterranean Tortoise, Mauremys lepropsa, a young male, distinguishable on the relatively long stem. I did not move for a long time, to observe him, and later, with slow motion movements, I managed to take a photo with my mobile phone. How lucky!
Generally speaking, those who come by their own means to join and live in the biological pool, have the right to stay (with the exception of invasive alien species). This is also true for tortoises. It is important to note that it is a protected species in Portugal and Europe, as well as all other reptiles. We have no right to move it away. Thus, it is also not a toy for anyone and it is very important not to give food. In nature they know how to eat and the same happens in the biological pool.