UPDATE: As of Friday, May 8, until further notice, the WNC Nature Center is still temporarily closed to the public. The Nature Center is working closely with the City of Asheville to determine the safest possible date to reopen. This will most likely take place during Phase 3 of North Carolina’s Stay at Home order. 

Open 361 Days a Year: 10:00am – 5:00pm, last entry 4:30pm

Box Turtle

Eastern Box Turtle

Terepene carolina carolina

The Eastern box turtle is the designated state reptile of North Carolina and is found throughout the state. They have high-domed carapaces (top shell), and hinged plastrons (bottom shell) which allows them to pull their legs and head into their shell, like closing a box. They are tan to dark brown and have oblong patterns on their shell that can be yellow, orange, or olive. An interesting trait specific to box turtles is that you can guess whether they are male or female by their eye color — males have red or orange irises and females have yellow or brown irises. Eastern box turtles can be found in moist forested areas, meadows, pastures and floodplains. If a box turtle’s habitat remains constant, they could spend their entire life in an area barely larger than a football field. Their diet consists of earthworms, slugs, mushrooms, and they are particularly fond of strawberries. While it is possible for Eastern box turtles to live for over 100 years, the average lifespan is around 50 years.

Mayberry

Date of Birth: Unknown

Like Red, Mayberry was born in the wild and also came to the Nature Center in 2012. Mayberry was run over by a lawnmower and because of that she has a permanent scar on the top of her shell.

What Makes Mayberry Unique? Mayberry is the shyer of the two education box turtles. While we do not know her exact age, by counting the rings on a single scute, we can estimate her age to be in her 20’s.

 

Red

Date of Birth: Unknown

Red was born in the wild, and came to the WNC Nature Center in October of 2009. Red was run over by a car and brought to the Nature Center to be rehabilitated.

What Makes Red Unique? Red is the bolder of the two education box turtles, and he also has metal sutures in the bottom of his shell as a permanent reminder of how he came to us.  Red also has bold red eyes, the stereotypical male box turtle characteristic for which he was named.

Meet our other animals

American Black Bear

American Black Bear

Generally shy and reclusive animals, black bears avoid human contact and are not normally aggressive. Two black bears, Uno and Ursa, live at the Nature Center.

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Red Wolf Karma

American Red Wolf

Red wolves are highly endangered species that has been eliminated from almost all of its natural range. Our breeding pair of red wolves, Karma and Garnet, are part of the AZA Species Survival Plan.

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Angora Goat

Angora Goat

Angoras are primarily browsing animals and thrive best where there is a good cover of brush, weeds, and grass.    Disliking the rain, Angoras are well adapted to a dry, mild climate.

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