Utah Tortoises

It’s February in St. George, Utah, snow is on the mountains, and I’m hiking in tortoise country with about 40 other tortoise nerds. We’re here for the Desert Tortoise Council symposium, and early arrivers like me are rewarded with a field trip.

Mojave Desert, Mojave desert tortoise

Desert Tortoise U.

There’s an entire industry set up to manage tortoise populations. At the center of the action is the Desert Tortoise Council, a brain trust of biologists, ecologists, and conservationists who have been training people for 30 years to help protect these tortoises.