Snapping Turtles

 

Picture of a snapping turtle

Snapping turtles are the largest freshwater turtle in the west and can grow to  the size of a beach ball and weight as much as 84 pounds.  These prehistoric-looking creatures have a mud colored shell and body, a large head, and a stout tail.  They eat both animals and plants.  To keep their cold blood warm, they are often seen basking in the sun on rocks or logs in the pond.  Being too large to hide in their shells, they defend themselves by snapping.

by Barbara Masoner, Audubon Naturalist

References:

Harper & Row’s Complete Field Guide to North American Wildlife, 1981, pg 397.

Dorling Kindersley Handbook, Reptiles and Amphibians, M O’Shea & Tim Halliday, 2001, pg 50.

http://nas.er.usgs.gov/queries/factsheet.aspx?SpeciesID=1226

http://fieldguide.mt.gov/detail_ARAAB01010.aspx

Id, fieldguide.mt.gov/detail_ARAAB01010.aspx

Previous Station  |  Next Station

* The markers on this trail were constructed by a Littleton Eagle Scout Project during the spring of 2012.