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Waking up to a snapping turtle
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Darren in TN    Posted 11-05-2003 at 14:13:29       [Reply]  [No Email]

Howdy, all.

I haven't posted here but once or twice before. I thought y'all might get a kick out of this story anyway.

I woke up this morning to the sound of our five dogs barking and carrying on, which is really nothing terribly unusual. However, the intermittent yipping and yelping was a matter of some concern. It sounded something like this, "woof, woof, woo-woo-woof, w-YIPE-YIPE!..." etc., etc., ad infinitum. I didn't want the dogs killing each other, so I threw the window open to tell them to knock it off. As soon as my eyes focused, I saw that the dogs weren't barking at each other, but at a roughly 25-pound snapping turtle in the middle of the backyard. We see these alot in our rivers and creeks, so I reckon this bruiser hiked up the 50 yards or so from our creek and just slid under the barbed and electrified wires. Well, the dogs wouldn't leave it alone and kept getting popped. By the time I got out there and shooed them away, two of them were pretty tender around the snout, but amazingly nobody had any parts crushed or removed. I considered picking it up by the tail and carrying it off, but past experience told me this bugger might be able to reach in toward my leg even if I held it out at arms length. To make a long story short, I decided to spare our ducks the menace come spring and went ahead and dispatched the turtle. Lord knows we have enough of the things around anyway. If there's a moral to this story I don't know what it is-- I just hope the dogs have learned their lesson and will leave such things alone from now on. Hopefully they'll extend the lesson to rattlesnakes, skunks, and farm equipment, too. :)

Anyone have welding plans for making floating armored hulls for ducks??

Y'all have a good one.
d


bulldinkie    Posted 11-06-2003 at 04:51:55       [Reply]  [Send Email]
We get about 6 here every year about a foot around.We have a trap to catch them.When we bought this farm ther workers kept talking about a huge turtle in our pond.One day my husband came to the farm there sitting on the edge of the pond was this big 2' round turtle.He said it stood up turned around went in the water.We never saw him again.We had 2 big males fighting in our pond a few weeks ago.we take them away.It has to be pretty far as they can come back.We gave some to people to eat.We get rid of them because we raise swans,we have ducks and 2 labs that like to swim in there.Nasty ,ugly boogers.


Redneck    Posted 11-06-2003 at 04:25:13       [Reply]  [No Email]
Saw one crossing a road one time and a dressed up feller trying to help it.We stopped and told him to leave it alone,it would make it on it's own but he looked at us as if to say"Go away rubes"so we went back to the pulpwood truck to watch the excitement.Sure nuff when he picked it up like a frisbee,it come around and took a clean hunk out of his arm.The look in his eyes,as they say,some things are priceless!


hay    Posted 11-06-2003 at 03:10:59       [Reply]  [No Email]
eat 'em. they taste like chicken, beef, pork. in all 7 different flavors meat. just clean really good BEFORE filleting the meat.


Darren in TN    Posted 11-06-2003 at 09:12:37       [Reply]  [No Email]

Hay,
I've been wondering how you clean the things. Folks have told me that to clean bowfin and gar (two other nasty, toothy southern critters for those that live in the snowy north) you have to use a saw of some similar instrument to get through the skin. How do you clean snapping turtles? Looks like a lot of work!

Thanks,
Darren


hay    Posted 11-06-2003 at 12:13:48       [Reply]  [No Email]
first, after they are dead, boil the daylights outta them to get the scum, leeches and other nasties off the shell and then take a small hatchet and break shell halves and peel off and then there's the meat. just fillet it and batter and cook it. good with spicy rice or hot sauce dip. good luck and don't get bit by one of them things. they do hurt!


Darren in TN    Posted 11-06-2003 at 14:00:24       [Reply]  [No Email]

Well that's what was wrong with my thinking-- I had convinced myself that you'd clean them before you cooked them, but that probably wouldn't work too well. I may try that-- actually sounds pretty good. I've been told that to clean a gar you have to freeze them and then remove the head with a hacksaw to start out. Probably the same with bowfin, but if you can endure their smell long enough to even consider cleaning one, you're a whole lot tougher than I am. I leave the gar and bowfin alone.

I'll keep an eye on my fingers while the turtles are still kicking. I've always been impressed by how fast they can strike and by how much force they apply. Doesn't seem very hard for them to pull chunks off of a 2x4 and anything that can do that has my attention.

Thanks for the info, Hay.
Darren


Clipper    Posted 11-05-2003 at 17:41:05       [Reply]  [No Email]
I have a cousin who lost 3 fingers to a big snapper....no regrets bout killing every snapper I come across no matter what their size is. You done good. :^)


Stan TN    Posted 11-05-2003 at 22:16:07       [Reply]  [Send Email]
We don't have many here on top of our hill. But I keep a weather eye out when fishing. Never ate snapper, they eat a lot of meat.


RB/CT    Posted 11-05-2003 at 14:43:01       [Reply]  [No Email]
Walk railroad tracks on a regular basis through two swamps. Over the summers i have saved many snapping turtles caught between the tracks or stuck at them. I pick them up by the tail and return them to the water. I hold them out at arms length and never have gotten bit. You have to hold on to them hard, as they will extend their legs all at once in on hard attempt to get loose. Too bad the animal had to die, and not even be used for food.


Darren in TN    Posted 11-05-2003 at 20:21:31       [Reply]  [No Email]

I'm not eating it, but the raccoons and coyotes will have a feast. You gotta be realistic about nature-- nothing is wasted. Decomposition is the work of bacteria and other microscopic things. They gotta eat too. Sorry if this offends, but it is simple reality. I don't like killing, but when it comes to predators I don't shed too many tears, either. Snapping turtles can be pretty hard on ducks, and we have a few of those here on the farm.

Y'all be good.
d


ow    Posted 11-05-2003 at 16:18:01       [Reply]  [No Email]
those glorified prehistoric pliers - they're still one thing i'll kill on sight - seen a lotta cows' legs & udders tore up by them, seen them leave tooth-marks in my hatchet blade, lost a tire on the van, had one rap my leg years ago, now i have a little grandson tottering around. nope, they still aren't welcome - i'll go look in a zoo if i have to :)


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