Volunteer photographer Bert Barbay says he photographed this Flying Turtle as it splashed out of the Lake near the Lodge on Sunday, March 18, around 3 p.m. Bert says he had the opportunity to catch it again on Sunday, March 25, at 3:02 p.m. near the Main Causeway.
Bert says it apparently likes to appear on Sundays, so this upcoming Sunday afternoon, April 1, should be another good time to see it. "With a wingspan of approximately 4 ft., it is an amazing sight," he adds.
Ken Cable, renowned author and wildlife columnist for The Friday Flyer, has suggested that these “Flying Turtles” are reptiles of the order Fúlÿnu (the crown group of the superorder Poisson d'Avril) with a scientific name of "Disfrutar Dia D'enganyar."
Dr. Vick Knight, known to many Canyon Lakers as "The Turtle Man," explains that Flying Turtles are native to Antarctica. The cold Antarctic winters force some groups of Fúlÿnus to adapt by gaining the ability to fly.
Vick says the turtles usually travel thousands of miles to the rain forests of South America. They are rarely seen north of the equator. He says these turtles are "rare, elusive and secretive." It is all but impossible to find them in the dense jungles of South America, or even to see their migration over the oceans. The turtles are not considered dangerous and Dr. Knight encourages local adventurers to try to see them. This is the first time one has been reported in Canyon Lake.