Taking care of turtles has its down aspects. Yes, it is joyous to watch them munch on delightful foods that we've supplied. Who can resist a turtle stretched out basking in the sun. Our heart melt when they come for a head scratch (or butt rub for Frankie). And baby turtles can turn a Grinch to a cooing, loving parent.
But then turtle care isn't all fun and games.
Cutting up vegetables and fruit to small bitty pieces really isn't such a chore. Nor is snipping up grass and hay into smaller munch-able pieces. But some chores get tough. Giving Frankie a bath can be challenging....and smelly. Picking up poop day after day, year after year can get tiresome. Mopping up urine, especially the 10 gallon Frankie deposit, can be entirely yucky. But the worse job of all...no not picking up Frankie poop. I can handle that. Toss those things without thinking about it...as long as there is a hand washing to follow. The worse I ever did...
The worse job of all happen today. After four days of rain that added up to over 8", coming down in big huge downfalls and then endless sprinkles, I had to clean out Frankie's enclosure. When I opening it up I was overcome by the fumes. First, Frankie had a week of poop deposits there. He had also peed (you can tell by the urates). But that was not the worst of it. Apparently the rain got backed up and was seeping into his enclosure. So four days of rain soaked poop, pee, soil and damp hay all goo-ed together.
I had no choice but start picking the poo by hand. Some of it came apart in my fingers. Yuck. Then I took handfuls of damp soiled hay and tossed that out. Finally I was ready to spread some of the dry hay that had been pushed against the backside of the enclosure. Much to my horror a family of cockroaches -- the BIG ones -- had moved in. I think most people who understand the all natural responses of someone nearly getting a handful of cockroaches in their hand. Well, you can dare to imagine my response. Oh yes, it was THAT bad.
No doubt, this was the worse clean up job ever.