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Common Snapping Turtle

Chelydra serpentina


These numerous and large (close to 2 feet in length) snapping turtles were enjoying the sun and warmer temperatures at Ritter Springs Park, just north of Springfield, Missouri. One, I thought may be dead, was just basking in the sun on his shell (upside down) at the water's edge - quick to turn and submerge when it heard me coming.


Can be found in ponds, lakes, or streams. Some may inhabit brackish environments, such as estuaries.


30 years lifespan.

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Springfield, Missouri, USA

Spotted on Apr 26, 2014
Submitted on Apr 26, 2014

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