I’m warning you now — unless you’re a Grade A douche, who is prone to violence against helpless animals, the following is going to rub you like a hairshirt.
Nathan Weaver, a student at South Carolina’s prestigious Clemson University, recently performed an experiment to answer a question about turtles: Can we help these little dudes cross the road any easier?
Box turtle population has declined slowly and steadily over the past few decades. One reason for the decline is the increase of automobiles and drivers on the roads — the same roads many turtles try… to… cross… very… slowly. Weaver’s experiment was in part to help in the road-crossing dilemma. And in part to see the reaction of drivers approaching a turtle.
No worries, turtle lovers, no real turtles were harmed in this experiment. However, Weaver’s rubber decoy was run over intentionally seven times within the course of an hour. According to his observations, several other drivers attempted to run over the turtle, but missed. There were a total of 267 vehicles that passed by within that time span.
I don’t know if this is a cultural issue in the south (I’m inclined to believe it’s far more widespread — and hardly just an issue in the USofA), but what positive is gained from running over a turtle? It makes you want to find several turtles and equip their shells with titanium spikes.
It would be interesting to interview the people who chose to hit the turtle (sometimes driving across the center line to do it). Well… interview them, or slap them with a “WTF!?” Because turtles are awesome.