This outdoor installation is part of "In Flight Entertainment," at the Spruill
Gallery in Dunwoody [www.spruillarts.org] The
remains of the installation will be on display until November 1, 2003.
During the opening, I created motion with the art,
which included a humanely treated live Gopher Tortoise courtesy of the Lanier Museum of
Natural History in Buford, GA.
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The Gopher Tortoise, whose numbers are
disappearing fast, is typically found in the longleaf pine habitat in Georgia. The
tortoise burrows a hole in the ground that also provides the habitat for other animals
such as the Diamond Back Rattlesnake, Eastern Indigo snake, and burrowing owls.
Development is the biggest enemy of the gopher tortoise. The Gopher tortoise is not easily
relocated due to fatal conditions such as micoplasma and upper respiratory disease. These
conditions are not detectable while a Gopher Tortoise is living, and this results in the
widespread of disease when the Tortoises are introduced into new populations during
relocation. This displacement is not only causing the demise of the gopher tortoise, but
also the many animals that live in the burrows that the tortoise creates.
state reptile of Georgia, the Gopher Tortoise is "Threatened." These
reptiles have a relatively long life span, and do not reproduce very frequently.
Click here for directions to the Spruill Gallery