With Summer gone and Autumn underway its traditionally a good time for 'End of Summer Storms' in the Mediterranean Region.
This year’s exceptionally high sea temperatures may have been a catalyst for storms like this one which was forming a few miles North of Mahon. And not only storms. We have had a number of repeating guests visiting us this end of season too.
The Gang, in words of Mrs. Haggar,
Left to right: Mr. Luff, Mrs. Crook, Mrs. Maycock, Mr. Crook, Mr. Taylor, Mr. Maycock, Mrs. Luff, Mr. Langley, Mrs. Buckman and Mrs. Haggar.
Thesedays whenthe fieldsbecomegreen againafterthe recent rains,we have seenin the land surrounding the hotel sometortoisehatchlings.
It seems that thetortoise (Testudohermannihermanni)was introduced inMenorcasome three thousand yearsago,and it was astaple foodforthe first settlers ofthe island.
Early in the morning, the animals leave their nightly shelters, which
are usually hollows protected by thick bushes or hedges, to bask in the
sun and warm their bodies. They then roam about the Mediterranean
meadows of their habitat in search of food. They determine which plants
to eat by the sense of smell.
Between May and July, female Hermann’s tortoises deposit between two and 12 eggs into flask-shaped nests dug into the soil. Most females lay more than one clutch each season. The pinkish-white eggs are incubated for around 90 days and, like many reptiles,the temperature at which the eggs are incubated determines the
hatchlings sex. At 26 °C, only males will be produced, while at 30 °C,
all the hatchlings will be female.
In nature, the animals dig their nightly shelters out and spend the
relatively mild Mediterranean winters there. During this time, their
heart and breathing rates drop notably.