MDC: “Give turtles a brake”

MDC: “Give turtles a brake”

MISSOURI (KFVS) - As temperatures begin to rise, more and more creatures get moving.

This is the case for turtles this spring and during the warmer months.

With these slower reptiles emerging from their burrows, it can be a deadly adventure and not from predators.

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), turtles are often hit and killed by vehicles as they cross the road.

Because turtles are becoming more active, MDC wants drivers to be cautious on the roads and to give the reptiles a brake.

Drivers are asked to slow down when they see a turtle in the road.

If a driver stops to help a reptile cross in safety, they are urged to check for traffic and move the turtle across the road in the direction it is traveling.

Don’t be tempted to take a turtle home. Leave them in the wild. Taking a turtle home can cause them to die a slow death.

The most common turtles spotted crossing Missouri roads include three-toed box turtles, ornate box turtle and snapping turtles.

MDC said thousands of box turtles are killed every year by vehicles.

During this time of year, the reptiles are hunting for food and mates.

Most of the travelers are males. They are searching for a new territory and a mate. Females are traveling to find a nesting area.

According to MDC, most Missouri turtles can live up to 30 years, but the common box turtle can live up to 80 and occasionally more than 100-years-old.

For more information about turtles click here.

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