Posted by: Debra LaValley | May 25, 2012

May 25, 2012

Olympic Dive by a Snapper

This female snapping turtle was quite large! Her shell must have been a good 18-20 inches long. She was on the footbridge that leads over to the Hannah Dustin Monument. I was with my nephew and his girlfriend. We snapped some photos and then the turtle did the unthinkable – she slowly turned and started toward the fencing on the side of the walkway. We watched in horror! There was enough room for her to go under the fencing! Suddenly, she was half over the edge! I was torn to either photograph the plunge or try grabbing its tail. I was too chicken to grab her tail. I have only picked up baby snapping turtles.

Then everything seemed to move in slow motion as she slipped off the bridge and took about a 25 ft plunge to the river below. Unfortunately, she landed in the very shallow water near the muddy shore. I think we all screamed and the thud was like a giant belly flop. Hesitantly – we looked over the bridge. I expected to see something quite horrible! However, much to our surprise – the female snapper – was right side up and moving. She walked/swam off under the bridge. We are hoping she is ok – but it must have caused some damage.

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