I posted the following from Linnea regarding removing turtles from Northwest Park back in May. There has been some recent discussion on the listserve about someone collecting turtles at the park over the weekend. Tom
Several reports have drifted my way of turtles being removed from the pond in Northwest Park.
I spoke to PARD and Tim Cole of Austin Reptile Service. Both shared the following:
- It is illegal to collect a turtle from public waterways.
- If you see anyone gathering turtles call 311 immediately to report the theft. Please (please) insist on filing a theft report. Do not just leave a message.
In addition, Tim Cole shared:
- Most turtles in NW Pond are herbivores, they help manage the plants in the pond. They do not harm the fish population.
- A lot of the species that you see in NW Pond will grow too big to be kept as pets, once you bring that turtle home.. you cannot release it back into the wild.
- Most turtles require extensive set-ups to thrive as kept pets (heat lamps, filters, tanks)
- A hunting license is required to gather/collect turtles
For more information about Texas Turtles, or help anything reptile related, contact Tim Cole of the Austin Reptile Service: http://www.austinreptileservice.net/turtles.html
The above photo was taken Sunday morning, 5.24.09 at the Northwest Park pond.