LETTER TO THE EDITOR: A lucky gopher tortoise, a lucky person who tried to run the turtle over and didn’t get caught

July 6, 2021
By Marcy Shortuse

To the Editor:

This morning I saw a vehicle driving over a tortoise nest. I went down to check on the nest and scared the tortoise right back into it. He was gorgeous, with a yellow and green mottled shell. I was glad he seemed to be all right.

I have since discovered that the fine for killing a tortoise is $5,000, and/or a jail sentence of up to five years.

I trust any parents or grandparents reading this will pass on the seriousness of the fine, so nobody says, “I had no idea.” In the eyes of the law this is an unacceptable excuse.

I know there is a $5,000 fine for feeding dolphins. It was this that prompted me to look into what other fines are out there.

Perhaps the readers of this letter can educate others about the fines and possible jail time involved.


Judy Banz

Boca Grande