We hear in them about parables of being slow and plodding, steady and methodical, and occasionally obsessed with Ninjitsu, news reporters, and pizza. We are, of course, talking about Turtles! Turtles are a type of reptile that exists in many environments through the word and have found their way into literature, poetry, and parable throughout the world’s history. World Turtle Day celebrates these noble reptiles and their place in the world, and encourages people to take action to help protect the, both the common pet turtle, and the ever endangered sea turtle.
History of Turtle Day
Well the first thing to know is that Turtles and Tortoises are not the same thing, though this day is dedicated to celebrating and protecting both. First created in 1990 by the American Tortoise Rescue, World Turtle day recognizes that some species of our hard (and soft!) shelled friends are suffering, almost on the edge of extinction due to environmental hazards and issues with hunting and harvesting of their eggs.
American Tortoise Rescue was created by Susan Tellem and Mashall Thompson, a married pair of animal activists who had a particular passion for tortoises. We all have to have something that drives us in this life, and for these two it was bonding over animal right’s activist work. Don’t think these two are just closet hippies with an overwhelming adoration for all things shelled and scaly. Susan is deeply involved with television arts & sciences and the public relations society of America while being a partner in Tellem Grody Public Relations Incorporated.
They organize charity collections and works around the world to help protect these amazing critters, and created Turtle Day to get everyone involved and spread awareness of the shrinking habitat and declining numbers of these sensitive creatures.
How to celebrate Turtle Day
Well first off, contact American Tortoise Rescue and find out what you can do in your area to help promote the protection of turtles. If there’s no activities in your area, work with them to find out what you can do to coordinate with local aquariums, pet stores, and nature groups to focus on the species of this reptile that live in your area. They’re an amazing creature, with certain varieties making great pets and others helping to preserve the eco-system in the waters they live in. Of course, if you live where snapping turtles haunt the waters, it’s probably a good idea that people know how to avoid them, where to find them, and how not to lose a toe! Happy Turtle Day!