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Put an ear out the back window. There's a sound coming from
the pond or the woods that might remind you of a broken train whistle,
or the quiet whisper of two leaves having a quarrel over who will pay the bill,
or it may sound to you like something that isn't a sound at all,
like the texture of ants on a log or the blinding taste of sunlight
on the hood of a truck.
Following are some of the most familiar and some of the rarest
songs heard from a great variety of North American turtles:
Eastern Fighting Turtle.
The aggressive snarl of the Eastern Fighting Turtle can carry
for up to 5 miles across still water. Even this is not a safe
distance away, for this turtle is a very fast swimmer and will
attack without provocation.
On a summer evening, the song of the Tudlow can be heard;
its characteristic gasping is both a mating call and a cry for help.
The number of gasps follows the Fibonacci sequence,
often reaching as high as 55 or 89 gasps before the animal loses consciousness.
The song of the Downy Tortuga can be easily recognized,
for it seems to be repeating the word unclean. Unclean.
The beautiful call of the Zombie Turtle is said to
hypnotize her mate for up to an hour. Human listeners are
likewise entranced, often forgetting responsibilities and losing muscular control.
The Mudflail is identifiable both by its song and by
the strong odor that emanates from its shell, which is
in a constant state of decomposition. Its soft and rancid
body is both a weakness and a natural protection