Little Creatures

farmerjan

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I know that snapping turtles have a place. But that said, when I was a kid we would go out in the boat on my grandmother's pond and the snapping turtles were as big as a wash tub and they devoured all the baby ducks that the mallards would hatch. They were destructive on the banks of the pond/lake... we called it a pond but it was about 4 acres in size. There were lots of painted turtles and some spotted ones although they were on the decline then. Also some mud turtles... We fished for sun fish (sunnies) and they would make their nests along the shallow parts of the shore... there were bass and pickerel in there too and when we were kids we also ice fished on the lake. Haven't had cold enough cold winters to freeze it safely in years.
There was a gourmet restaurant across the road, and one of the chef's had made turtle soup in his past. We caught one of the big turtles (dad helped as it could have taken off our hand/fingers) and they kept it in a big tub in clean water and changed it daily, feeding lettuce and other stuff, until the "muddiness" was cleaned out from his flesh... then they killed it and he cooked it.... I never got to try it though.
We would kill the snapping turtles because they were so destructive and there were so many in the lake. It was not safe to swim in the lake because there were so many. They also worked on the fish populations.
I have no use for them, but then I have no use for raccoons with all the destructive damage they have done to the chickens over the years. I never bothered much about the raccoons until they learned how to open hooks and eyes on the chickens and maimed and killed a pen full of young purebred show birds we were raising. It was heartbreaking to find half grown chicks with legs and wings torn off or mangled .... and not eaten. I don't begrudge an occasional meal, but they are destructive. Especially when I am doing my best to protect the chickens from marauders.

We used to encourage the painted turtles and such and set aside a part of the one cove for not disturbing the turtles and left some of the one tree that fell in there so they had places to come out and sun themselves and places to hide in the water and branches underneath.

Memories of youth.... had a box turtle that used to come and lay eggs at a friends house every year... saw a few of the little ones after they hatched... they were SOOOO little. Seldom ever see a young one, and I try my darndest to stop and move them off the road so they don't get squished....
 

JanetMarie

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What a cool thing! You are a turtle egg babysitter!
When we looked at this house and property 11 years ago, the current homeowner(s) wanted a new homeowner who would be a turtle egg sitter. They said a Snapping Turtle comes up from the marsh every year to lay eggs, and the homeowner wife would find the nest and put a fence around them.

I haven't found a turtle nest around here, and the one who was here the other day, it doesn't look like there are eggs under the sand where she was. I've seen two baby Snappers around, so there must be turtle nests somewhere and doing well hatching.
 

flowerbug

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No way! I'll eat vegetables or weeds from my garden.

A few years ago, on the local news there was a story about someone in Michigan who posted on their facebook page video of them sawing with a toothed saw the head off of a Snapping Turtle. Their excuse was that they eat Snapping Turtles, but the way they were killing it was the problem. There was a BIG outrage over it from the public. The people who posted the video even received death threats. Most Michiganders love turtles-alive.

i didn't hear about that one. :( i'm in Michigan, i'll rescue turtles crossing the road if i can. big snapping turtles aren't common here as it is farmland all around us. the ponds that exist in this area are all man-made. this county is the only one in Michigan that doesn't have a natural lake.
 
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