Who needs groundhogs to tell us about spring? Meet a desert tortoise

Mojave Max has gone to ground for the winter.

The real live tortoise who lives at Springs Preserve in Nevada has become the subject of a contest open to all students in Nevada public schools.

Every fall when the hot Las Vegas weather cools off, Max goes into his burrow to begin brumation. (This is how Max hibernates.)

In the spring, when the weather begins to warm up, Max emerges. The student who guesses as closely as possible to the correct day, hour, and minute when Max will emerge from his burrow wins!

The grand prize winner and his or her entire class will win Mojave Max t-shirts, Mojave Max Olympic-style medals, and a pizza party and field trip to Springs Preserve to see the real Mojave Max!

The winner also receives a laptop computer, a Springs Preserve year-long family membership, an “America the Beautiful” year-long pass to National Parks and Federal Recreation areas and a backpack filled with outdoor goodies.

The winner’s teacher will also receive a laptop computer.

In 2018, Mojave Max emerged on Friday, March 23, at 11:11 a.m. But he’s emerged as late as April 15 back in 2005.  Here’s another hint: Mojave Max is also definitely not a morning tortoise. He’s only emerged once at 8:30 a.m. back in 2001. Most times Mojave Max is an afternoon riser.



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Peg Fong is also in recovery from newspapers

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