Remains of a southwestern pond turtle in Elizabeth Lake, California
Salt-encrusted remains of a southwestern pond turtle (Actinemys pallida) as found in the dry lake bed of Elizabeth Lake, Los Angeles County, California. Note the heavy coating of evaporites on the carcass. Most living turtles collected in 2014 had similar but varying degrees of coatings on the head, limbs and shell.
Almost all of the turtles living in a southern California lake died following a large fire and years of drought, according to a new USGS report.