Canku Ota

(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


May 19, 2001 - Issue 36





 by Enchanted Learning


The Common Snapping Turtle is an aggressive, freshwater turtle usually found in ponds, streams, and canals. It spends most of its life in the water. These nocturnal (active at night) turtles live in eastern North America. Snapping turtles are so fearless that they have been known to attack people. Snapping turtles have a life span of about 30-40 years.

Anatomy: The Common Snapping Turtle has powerful jaws, a sharp beak, and no teeth. It has a long tail, and each webbed foot has five clawed toes. This turtle, like all turtles, has no vocal cords and can only make hissing and grunting sounds. It grows to be up to 18.5 inches (47 cm) long and weighs up to 86 pounds (39 kg). Male snapping turtles are larger than the females. The color of the shell ranges from brown to olive green to black to tan. The color of its skin also varies and can be gray, brown, yellow, tan, or black.

Diet: Snapping Turtles are omnivores; they eat plants, small fish, frogs, insects, snakes, and even dead animals that they find (carrion).



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