Welcome to my blog, where I take pleasure in words and pictures, be they my own or those of others. I'm a creative individual, and the crafty side I explore on my 'other blog', Picking Up The Threads, which I hope you'll visit too. I'm sure you understand that I have sole copyright of my original work and any of my contributions, so please ask if you want to use them. A polite request is rarely refused. So, as they used to say on the BBC's 'Listen With Mother' radio programme, many years ago: "Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin."

Friday, 15 February 2013

Sepiida Saturday

No I haven't made a mistake with the title of this post and all will be revealed in due course.

Unbelievably, nearly forty years separate the above photograph and the three below. The turtle above was pictured by my husband in a shopping mall  in Waikiki Beach, Hawaii in 1974. It must have seemed a novelty to him as I can't think of any shopping centres in UK where one could stroke giant turtles at the time.

My daughter loves the sea, fish and aquatic animals, and in 2011 we combined a short trip back to UK with a visit to Oceanarium, a sea front aquarium in Bournemouth, Dorset, where we were staying. There was a section called Turtle Beach and we were fascinated to watch the turtles at such close quarters.


This week's Sepia Saturday has a tortoise with a soldier in the old photo prompt, and Alan invited us to choose a theme from any item in the picture, generously allowing turtles in place of tortoises. Old, the picture at the top may be but it is not sepia; there is, however, a sepia connection. Did you know that reptiles, especially tortoises and turtles, enjoy cuttlefish bones?

Co-incidentally I picked up a couple of bones on the beach here in Lanzarote on Monday. I don't have a tortoise, turtle or even a budgie (for they too have a liking for the cuttlebone, as a source of calcium) but had another, more crafty, use in mind, which may be revealed on my other blog in due course. The tortoise above seems to be enjoying his treat, and there is even a YouTube clip of a tortoise munching happily away, here.

And the sepia connection I can reveal at last is this; cuttlefish are marine animals of the order Sepiida. They range in size from 15 to 25 cms (5.9 to 9.9 inches), with the largest size, Sepia apama reaching 50 cms (20 inches) in length and over 10.5 kg(23 lbs) in weight. The Graeco-Roman world valued it as a source of the unique brown pigment the creature released from its syphon when alarmed. The word for it in both Greek and Latin, sepia, is now used to refer to a brown pigment in English, (but that last bit we all knew of course).

If you want to see what other contributors have made of the unusual prompt picture above, hurry on over to Sepia Saturday and don't be caught napping.
Image of tortoise with cuttlebone by Richard Mayer, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons share alike licence.

31 comments:

  1. Hello Marilyn:
    This is indeed all most fascinating - one learns something new all of the time.

    Strangely, only yesterday afternoon we had tea with a priest friend of ours where, in his rooms overlooking St. Stephen's Basilica here in Budapest, he keeps a pet tortoise!

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  2. Well there you go...I learned something...sepiida..thanks for this!

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  3. These are wonderful photos, Marilyn. And, who would have thought that so many creatures enjoy eating a certain type of fish bone? I have always enjoyed turtles, but have never had one as a pet. My grandson does have one, and I asked him where he got it, and I was informed that Yoda was a stray, lol.

    Kathy M.

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  4. I'm puzzling over how you made the connection to Sepiida. What a happy coincidence!

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    1. Wendy, it was indeed a happy co-incidence and tied things together nicely. It was good old Google of course. You've done this yourself I'm sure. Type in sepia tortoise and sooner or later a connection is made that appeals and fits the bill. I do so enjoy exploiting it in this way, and love making connections like this. It's a bit like doing crosswords or other mind games.

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  5. Nice job of looping everything together. I had no idea cuttlefish got so big!! Do the actual cuttlefish ever wash up?

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    1. Helen, I have no idea. It was so strange to find these bones this week and then have them crop up in this way through a SS connection. The beach where they were found is quite unusual and out if the way.

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    2. Yes, we get cuttlefish washing up on our beaches in southern Australia at least.

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  6. Ooh now that's some auspicious word wrangling. I can't even begin to guess what you might be planning to craft from cuttlefish - intriguing!

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  7. So nice to know where sepia comes from. I never knew that.
    Wasn't it wonderful that you had so many photos of turtles?
    Nancy

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  8. This was most enjoyable and educational. Kuddos to you!

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  9. Love the way you tied sepia and the theme together, and I learned a new word :)

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  10. You are in Dorset this week, I will be next week, but not looking at turtles or tortoises.

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  11. At the start I was guessing Sepiida was your pet turtle's name :) No, I didn't know about the cuttlefish bones. Thanks, now I know.

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  12. Oh that is a clever link. Keep us posted on the cuttlefish bone project.

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  13. Hare and Tortoise, neither are seen on the menu much these days in Dorset.

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  14. Your turtle photos are great. I shall be showing off Sepiida the next time I see a cuttlefish bone. Great sepia connection.

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  15. I have always wondered where the word "sepia" came from but never got around to looking it up. Well, now I know! And, thanks for a particularly interesting post today.

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  16. Informative post. Clever title!

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  17. Fascinating trivia--I never thought about the source of cuttlebone. Looking it up I found that Sepia is actually the name of a genus: "Sepia is a genus of cuttlefish in the family Sepiidae encompassing some of the best known and most common species. . . .The name of the genus is the Latinized form of the Ancient Greek σηπία, sēpía, cuttlefish."

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    1. Yes, I think that pretty much corresponds to my last paragraph.

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  18. This probably explains why my pet turtles shells kept getting soft and then they would die. If only we had fed them some cuttlefish bones.

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  19. Marilyn, this was so cuttley (ha ha slightly related to cuddle!) but I can't recall ever having heard of cuttlefish so, I had to pop over to my fave google and check it out, and so I discovered your clever little ever so delightful mystery to Sepia! Thank you for this fun and informative turtle post!

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  20. My budgies liked cuttlebone too. I hadn't realized there was a connection between cuttlebones and old photos! Seeing a tortoise eating one was funny and unexpected. BTW the Dutch name for a turtle is schildpad ('shielded toad').

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  21. Well, that was fascinating. Who would have ever thought there would be a real connection between turtles and Sepia Saturday.
    Barbara

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  22. Your pic may not be sepia but maybe some of those turtles were old enough to have seen photographers taking those sepia pics...

    A suggestion: should we make cuttlefish OUR mascot?!?
    :D~
    HUGZ

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  23. Sepian education at its best! I was introduced to cuttlefish at a splendid aquarium in Whitehaven, Cumbria. They are remarkably intelligent and beautiful creatures. I'd rather be entertained by cuttlefish than tortoises any time.

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  24. You certainly reminded me that turtles like cuttlefish just as do budgies. I do love turtles when seen in the wild, swimming...never even thought of that either as part of the topic! How clever everyone is to come up with these ideas...very clever link to the Sepiida naming.

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  25. First off the tortoise photos are charming. I adore their expressions.

    But the sepia information is incredible. I will now find even more joy in our weekly excursions.

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  26. What An Expressive Face Your Dorset Turtle Has!He Looks A Bit To Me Like An Old Bailey Judge!

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