Past Meetings


Posted by Sue on January 12, 2020 at 9:50 PM

Call to Order: 7:35 p.m.
Present: 9

The club welcomed some new members & guests. Each participant introduced themselves & spoke about their tortoises or about their interest in the club. Membership forms were given out to a few people.
Members were reminded about renewing their memberships for the year.

President Bob Parker talked about using clear epoxy over the permit sticker when putting it onto the tortoise. The museum has tortoises which the club has adopted. Tortoises will eat mulberry leaves & collard greens. Before brumation, a tortoise should have an empty stomach as the food might rot in their stomachs. Sometimes, the club has sulcatas for adoption.

A guest who had found a tortoise had a few questions on its care.  Q: What about winter? A: The tortoise is better off in a burrow. Putting straw in the entrance protects the opening & allows air to flow in & out. Refer to the website, “Ridgecrest Tortoise Club”. Bob passed out brochures. A tortoise stops eating in the fall, then goes into its burrow. Males in the wild fight over territory. It’s fine to keep a tortoise solitary. Dandelion greens are good. Kale is okay but the kale has a lot of water in it from the store. There is a list from Jawbone Canyon about food. “The Tortoise Table” is a good UK website.

Bob presented a short program on local critters in preparation for Dr. Phil Leitners’s Mojave ground squirrel program on the 29th of October. Dr. Leitner is an authority on Mojave ground squirrels. The lecture is sponsored by Kerncrest Audubon & our club. The lecture is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at the Maturango Museum.

Many different desert living creatures were featured in the PowerPoint, entitled “Burrows”. A few of the creatures mentioned were burrowing owls (who lay eggs in their burrows), wasps, desert iguanas, whiptail lizards, collard lizards, badgers, & kangaroo rats.

Mohave ground squirrels are differentiated from Antelope Valley ground squirrels by the lack of stripes on their sides. They hibernate & spend a lot of time underground, about nine months out of the year. This depends on the amount of rain in a season. If there is no food to eat, there are no babies.

More creatures featured in the PowerPoint were desert mice, rabbits (they do use burrows), jack rabbits/hares (they do not use burrows), reptiles (they use others’ burrows), & spiders (ex: tarantulas). The only poisonous snakes around here are the rattlesnakes.

Tortoises use burrows that are often under bushes (shade). Tortoises are diurnal. They might use the same burrow for 100 years!

Next meeting: 
The next meeting will be on Monday, November 11th at 7:00 p.m. A lecture by Tim Shields will be presented. Tim will talk about his raven studies which will include information about using laser technology & mechanical tortoises.

Adjourned:  8:30 p.m.


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