To escape the hot Mexican Chihuahuan desert sun, Coahuilan box turtles chill in the waters of Laguna de los Burros.
Unique among the world’s box turtles, these endangered animals are aquatic and spend perhaps 90 percent of their day in the springs, rivers, and pools of Mexico’s Cuatro Cienegas wetlands. Only a few thousand of the turtles exist, and since the 1960s, their habitat has been cut in half by irrigation and drought.
Worldwide, freshwater species extinction rates are four to six times higher than those of terrestrial or marine species.
Photograph by George Grall