Pond Snapper

Every now and then you may see something strange in the middle of the field, yard or driveway. At first it looks like a big ole rock that wasn’t there before. This happened a couple years ago to me coming up the drive from work and I just to myself “where did that come from?”

As it turns out I went back down the drive to pick up the rock and it was gone, did I bump it with the tire and it roll off into the weeds? I got to looking for it and found the rock had legs, and a tail and a pointy mouth. Yep a snapping turtle. These guys look like they came from the prehistoric dinosaur era.

Snapping turtle prehistoricEven this year we ran into another snapping turtle heading for the pond. It’s always a tossup whether I want them in the pond or not. Snapping turtles are not all that aggressive unless they are provoked and their main food source is things like plants, dead or dying fish and the occasional sick fish.

We have an odd planting of a lily in deep water and every now and then we’ll see the long stem and leaf floating in the water as if it was cut off at the bottom.

Are they good or bad for the pond? These are just my thoughts but it is nature that provides them for a reason to do their part in the pond ecosystem. A couple of my dislikes are they can borrow into the sides of the pond which could also be the dam of the pond, and if you didn’t keep the dam mowed and have tree roots, groundhog holes or even muskrat holes the dam is getting weekend and bound for a leak.

I guess the only other reason I don’t want them in the pond is, “maybe I’ll get bit”? I was at a conference and the samepond snapping turtle question was raised, about getting bit. So have you been bit by a snapping turtle while swimming or minding your own business around the pond? Or did you get bit while messing around with the turtle? Lastly they just look ugly in a way but also kind of cool since they look like a prehistoric creature.

There are a couple ways to know if you have these snappers in your pond is to walk around quietly and you may see them in the shallows rooting around or sunning and other times all you’ll see is their head pocking out of the water catching a breathe of air, but as soon as they see you they’re gone.

snapper mouthMy only controls of the snappers is the occasional catch before they get to the pond and take them away to the creek or if we see and can capture them in the pond and they go for the same walk to the creek. Don’t worry there are still more in there that probably go undetected. You know the deal out of site out of mind.

About the Author: Darrell Rhoades is the founder of Whatpond.com. A one man business, works full time in tool & die. It all started when he built his own pond for the family. Ran into pond issues and started the research with pond suppliers and conferences for pond management. He writes about pond building and pond management and sells pond management supplies, aeration & fountains and Practical hands on experiences at Whatpond.com. . No physical store, but has items in stock.

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