NV tortoise emerges from burrow in sign of spring

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Updated: 4/09/2014 12:55 pm

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A famous southern Nevada tortoise has emerged from his burrow in another sign that spring has begun.

Clark County officials say Mojave Max made his seasonal debut at 4:10 p.m. Monday at the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

The tortoise goes into hibernation every winter and emerges each spring as his internal clock responds to warmer temperatures and longer daylight hours.

Schoolchildren in the area guess when Max will emerge as part of an annual contest that's been running since 2000. The winning student receives prizes including a year-long pass to national parks, a laptop computer and a digital camera.

The winner has not yet been announced.

The earliest the tortoise has emerged is Feb. 14, and the latest is April 17.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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