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Common Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina)
Identification: Broad gray, brown, or olive (often algae covered)
carapace with jagged rear edge. Plastron small, cross shaped. Tail very long,
topped with row of large triangular scales.
Photo © Jim Harding
Adult carapace length: 8 to 19.3 inches (20 to 49 cm). Michigan's
Habitat: Ponds, marshes, lakes, streams, slow rivers and other water
habitats. Fairly pollution tolerant.
Habits: Snappers bask less than other species. They eat almost any
small animal they can catch (insects, crayfish, tadpoles, etc.), as well as
carrion and aquatic plants. Dangerous if molested on land, less likely to bite
Reproduction: Females bury from 10 to 96 round eggs in a sunny spot,
usually in June. The black, long tailed hatchlings emerge in 55 to 125 days.
Range and Status: Common statewide, but locally depleted due to
Related Documents> Snapping Turtle Occurrances Map - 110890 bytes