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May 14, 2005
February was a terrible month for skunks. I must have seen 20 or 25 dead on the road just during my weekend trips that month. For whatever reason, time for juveniles to locate their own territory or whatever, I guess they were on the move, and many of them got whacked on Ozark highways.

In May the turtles have been on the move, box turtles and snapping turtles,too, and the highways have taken a toll on them as well. I don't know if I should confess this because it sounds kind of crazy to me, too, but I'm one of those people who, if there's a safe place to pull over, will stop and help a turtle make it across the road.

Years ago when Manda, one of my old Irish setters, was a youngster she got nipped right on the tip of the nose by a snapping turtle. And I don't know if that just really, really pissed her off at turtles or what, but always after that, pity the poor turtle that crossed paths with Manda Blue. If she found one on a walk or around the yard she would sit herself down and settle in for a nice long session of gnawing, intent on tortoicide, and would, given enough time, gnaw her way through shell and turtle and all, a grisly process indeed if not stopped in time. I must have had to rescue dozens of them over the years, and if you doubt her determination, once or twice I had to dispatch an unfortunate one that I did not discover in time.

Since the night of Friday the 13th was cool after recent rains, Saturday morning figured to be a good time for fog in the valley of the Buffalo. So as day was breaking I was standing at Hedges pour-off with a camera. Photography ensued.

Today's Back Light features a photo taken in the spring of 2004, once more at the Stone Groove, a favorite spot on one of my favorite creeks.