Invaded by Ninja Turtles

Snapping turtles, that is, not teenage or mutant.

In spite of the ugly chicken wire fence I put around my water garden, this monster got in. I noticed a couple of snipped-off water lily leaves so I knew she was in there, so I got out the turtle net and waited quietly for her to show the tip of her nose to breathe. The “ninja” part comes from the fact that she is so stealthy in the water, for a lumbering, clumsy creature on land. Sort of like me except for the fact that I’m also hopeless in water.

Snapping turtles, that is, not teenage or mutant.

In spite of the ugly chicken wire fence I put around my water garden, this monster got in.  I noticed a couple of snipped-off water lily leaves so I knew she was in there, so I got out the turtle net and waited quietly for her to show the tip of her nose to breathe.  The “ninja” part comes from the fact that she is so stealthy in the water, for a lumbering, clumsy creature on land.  Sort of like me except for the fact that I’m also hopeless in water.

Snapping turtle in the net
Snapping turtle in the net

I know it is a female because she comes to lay eggs in our driveway and then stops off to ruin my pond on the way home (a bigger uncultivated pond next door with no juicy water lilies or brightly coloured, easy to catch goldfish, just tough weeds and fast native fish).

Here she is after I gave her a taxi ride home in the net.

Snapping turtle

Snapping turtle

Then when I got back, I found this 8 cm (3 inch) turtle on a rock by the pond.  Obviously one of last year’s hatchlings who had moved in permanently.  So it got a new home too.

Young snapping turtle
One year-old snapping turtle

Author: Eric Lawton

Eric is a natural philosopher living in rural Ontario

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