Life, Description And Other Facts About Snapping Turtles

733 words - 3 pages

Snapping TurtlesTurtle IntroductionThe common snapping turtle lives in North America from Nova Scotia, Canada, to Florida to all areas east of the Rocky Mountains. Common snapping turtles prefer to live in river and lake bottoms. Snapping turtles have a tan to black shell, strong jaws, sharp claws and a long heavily serrated tail.Turtle DetectionTurtle shells are wonderful protection. When a turtle is afraid he pulls himself into his shell to hide from predators and humans. Turtles can detect danger close by. However some species of turtles are unable to hide completely in their shell and protect themselves in other ways. The snapping turtle defends itself with its strong jaws and sharp claws. Their shell can help them blend in with underwater plants.A Freshwater Home For FiveOver 2/3 of all turtle species live in freshwater on six of the seven continents. More than five different species can live in the same stretch of a freshwater river. ...view middle of the document...

Omnivorous like the box turtle eat fruits, vegetables, small worms, and other insects. The common snapping turtle is a scavenger and eats everything from aquatic plants to dead fish.Reproduction And In Danger Of Being TurtledTurtles reproduce by laying eggs. The female turtle digs a nest in moist dirt or sand. She covers her eggs and departs. In a few months depending on the turtle species and temperature, the eggs hatch by themselves. Most freshwater turtles and land tortoises lay less than 20 eggs. However the common snapping turtle lies up to 80 eggs at a time. When the turtlets have hatched they may not be able to break out if the soil above the nest became dry and hard. They may have to wait for rain to soften the opening.A hatched turtlets life is full of danger. Many animals prey upon hatchlings as they make their way to the water. Some scientists believe that only one in one hundred turtles live to adulthood. Once a turtle becomes an adult it had fewer enemies than it did as a hatchling.Turtle Trouble! Help!Today, almost half of all turtle's species are in trouble. Some species are at risk of becoming extinct within ten years. There are five main reasons why: Habitat Destruction, Hunting, Environmental Pollution, Alien Species and Diseases and the natural killer Predators. Help is on the way. In the United States, Federal laws have been passed to protect various endangered turtle species.Turtle Facts In A ShellThe scientific name for the common snapping turtle is Chelydra serpentina. Turtle Talk- from the United States to Great Britain to Australia land turtles are commonly called tortoises. Freshwater turtles like the snapping turtle is just "turtle" in the United States Terrapin in Great Britain and tortoise in Australia. Ocean-going turtles are called sea turtles in the United States and turtle in Great Britain. Another interesting fact about turtles is molting they are part of the reptile family and molt their scales called scutes one at a time. A fact just on the common snapping turtle they are known to be vicious but there are no records of unprovoked attacks on people. Not only common snapping turtles but all turtles are amazing reptiles and fascinating creatures.

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