Vol. 13 No. 1
"Vision without action is only a dream. Action without vision only passes time. Vision with action can change the world." - Joel Baker
In this issue...
More Than Just a Snappy Name
Than Just a Snappy Name
Snapping turtles are aquatic, or water turtles commonly found in muddy rivers, marshes, and lakes. Snapping turtles love taking leisurely swims through their murky habitats of water dense with plant growth. When Snapping Turtles feel endangered in the water, they usually hide themselves amongst the plants and mud and do not use their famous "snapping defense". However, they are easily agitated on land and are quick to defend themselves with their long neck and sharp jaw. This "snapping" does not have a special name, but I like to call it the "Mike Tyson Defense".
Handling these chomp-happy animals can be tricky. The only safe way of handling a Snapping Turtle is to grab it by the base of the tail and avoid contact with its head, especially the mouth! However, if a Snapping Turtle is picked up incorrectly, the turtle can be injured and cause injury to others. It is best to avoid handling the Snapping Turtles at all costs.
Although Snapping Turtles may appear to be ravenous meat eaters, they are really omnivorous. They enjoy gorging themselves with small animals such as fish, frogs, birds, and small mammals, and also eat a variety of plants. Snapping Turtles, however, aren't the only animals to enjoy eating meat. The Snapping Turtle is the most demanded of turtle meats and is used to make turtle soup.
Snapping Turtle breeding takes place in the spring and early summer months. Mother Snapping Turtles build their nests in moist sand and soil in sunny areas. These mommy turtles can lay anywhere from 10 eggs to as many as near 100! It usually takes the eggs 55 to 125 days to hatch; however, most are destroyed by predators or do not survive into adulthood.
Snapping Turtles are found in most areas of Michigan, their numbers are
decreasing. Natural predators are not the only reason for this. Snapping
Turtles are becoming increasingly rare due to exploitation. The Michigan
Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has rules and regulations on the
catching and keeping of Snapping Turtles, but it is best to leave these
animals in nature.