Monday, March 29, 2010

Oh, Snap!

Here's another new critter from this past weekend, this time on Sunday in a drainage ditch among the fields of Ruskin. My buddy saw him crossing the road and went to help so he didn't get run over. Usually turtles in the road are gophers or some other common species, but not this time. This was a small snapping turtle, somebody you do not want to mess with. Get anything within a few inches of those jaws and it's going to wind up getting chopped in two. These guys don't fool around!

The only way to get this guy out of the road was to push him quickly or kick him with your foot. Anything gentler would result in getting bit. So that's how he wound up with grass all over his face as he was firmly nudged across the road and onto the shoulder.

Here's a nice overall view where you can see how well armored this guy is. Not only is he mean, but if someone does get the better of him, they're unlikely to be able to make much of a meal out of him.

Another butt shot (what that, three today?), showing the long tail and the serrated edge of the upper carapace. This guy means business. We eventually got him down into the ditch beside the road, and he immediately dug himself into the mud and disappeared. And there was only a couple of inches of water in the ditch!

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