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Mojave Max emerges, signaling the arrival of spring in Las Vegas

Mojave Max — the most famous tortoise in Southern Nevada — decided Saturday that he’s done sleeping for the winter.

The desert tortoise officially emerged from his burrow at 1:28 p.m. Saturday , according to a Clark County release.

The earliest record of him emerging was on February 14, 2005; and the latest he emerged was April 17, 2012.

Mojave Max, who lives in Las Vegas’ Springs Preserve, starts his reptilian hibernation every winter and emerges every spring. His awakening signals the start of springlike weather in Southern Nevada, the county said.

The winner of the 20th annual Mojave Max Emergence Contest, in which kindergarten to fifth-grade Clark County students participate, will be announced soon, the county said Saturday.

The students guessed what day Mojave Max would emerge from his burrow after studying the Mojave Desert weather, temperatures and conditions.

The winning student will win a yearlong family membership to the Springs Preserve, a yearlong family pass to national parks and federal recreation areas, and a laptop.

The winner’s class receives medals, T-shirts, a trophy for the school, a laptop for the teacher and a field trip to the Springs Preserve to meet Mojave Max, the county said.

More than 6,800 guesses were entered during this year’s contest, the county said.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

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