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Baby Desert Tortoise — Here's your "awwwwwwww, so cute!" moment for the day...nothing tops this one.
Here we see a a desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) hatching from its egg, as photographed by one of our USGS scientists at the Western Ecological Research Center. USGS studies the life history and ecology of the desert tortoise, which is a federally listed threatened species only found in the Mojave Desert.
Young tortoises are especially prone to predators like dogs and ravens, whose numbers can increase around areas of human activity and structures. Adult tortoises can be killed by car traffic, ingesting trash, and wildfires, and are affected by loss of habitat from urban and industrial development, cutting short their potential lifespan of 100 years.
USGS research on desert tortoises are helping federal and state management agencies improve land use and conservation plans, and balance the recovery of this threatened species with other resource use priorities in the Mojave Desert landscape. Watch a video of a Desert Tortoise hatching at bit.ly/USGSTortoise.
Photo Credit: K. Kristina Drake, USGS.
|Source||Baby Desert Tortoise|
|Author||U.S. Geological Survey from Reston, VA, USA|
|This file is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.|
|The person who associated a work with this deed has dedicated the work to the public domain by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law. You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.
|This image was originally posted to Flickr by U.S. Geological Survey at https://flickr.com/photos/27784370@N05/16490346262. It was reviewed on by the FlickreviewR robot and was confirmed to be licensed under the terms of the cc-zero.|
|Camera manufacturer||NIKON CORPORATION|
|Camera model||NIKON D7000|
|Orientation of image||1|
|Image resolution in width direction||72|
|Image resolution in height direction||72|
|Unit of X and Y resolution||2|
|Exposure time||10/3200 sec (0.003125)|
|F number||f / 9|
|ISO speed rating||100|
|Lens focal length||105 mm|
|Date and time original image was generated||2012:09:13 10:21:33|
|Date and time image was made digital data||2012:09:13 10:21:33|
|Maximum lens aperture||3.7|
|Color space information||65535|
|Software used||QuickTime 7.6.6|
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