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The Case of the Missing Tortoise

May 6, 2012

Carl with Dots

On Saturday April 14th, my son mowed the lawn and forgot to pen up our tortoise named Dots, a spur-thighed African that weighs 23 pounds and is only 12 years into her 80 year life span.Dots is a vegetarian that follows me in the back yard when I am touching up the landscape. She loves flowers, old tomatoes, strawberries, carrots, grass, romaine lettuce, corn – nothing goes to waste in the Gallo household.On Wednesday April 18th, I noticed the pile of food I tossed out in the yard was not being eaten. That happens sometimes – she doesn’t feel well and she cuddles up under our Traveler Palm and sleeps. But she wasn’t there. So I went inside and asked if anyone saw “me-dots”

Without a positive response, I asked the kids if they left the gate fence open recently…I wasn’t around on Saturday when Carlito mowed the lawn, so I didn’t know.

Then the confessions came a-flying and the search was on.

I even had the Police Commander of Palmetto Bay in the search – he opened a file and titled it “The case of the missing tortoise”

We posted a Facebook note for the neighbors, and we got a hit on Sunday evening, April 22nd.

A neighbor saw her roaming the streets earlier in the week and called the Village of Palmetto Bay – the local park ranger picked her up to bring her to Bill Sadowski Park, which is 30 acres of woods.

We tried to call the ranger office Monday morning, but the are closed Monday and Tuesday, so yesterday, when we finally got in touch with him.

We found out that he too has a spur-thighed African Tortoise…a BOY, and he brought “me-dots” home so his tortoise could have a mate.

He said they snuggled together every evening, and he even gave her the name of Quinn, since his tortoise is called Harley.

He was more than happy to return Dots back to her rightful master, Me!

So attached you will see a picture of our happy reunion, and then I turned her over and marked her bottom.

Of course I’ll have to check the marking every month to make sure it’s still legible…and I’ve got a collar and a leash for her now so I could take her for a walk around the block.

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