Despite all we humans do to pave, plow and dominate, nature has a way of springing back in unusual and surprising ways. That's what residents of Topanga Canyon have found. Four years after wildfires swept a path from Calabasas to the ocean, a virtually extinct species of turtle has slowly crept back to the creeks and ponds where once it was quite common.
The western pond turtle, on the state's list of most threatened species, has been popping up along a stretch of Old Topanga Road, prompting residents to pitch in and buy signs warning motorists of the slow-moving creatures. Some speculate the turtles hang out in a Topanga pond, the location of which is kept secret to prevent the curious from messing the place up and hurting the turtles.