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 Common Snaping Turtles

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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:29 pm

I am a huge fan of snappers. Other then the AST, they are my favorite hard herp. Here are a couple pics of my favorites.

This is the biggest that i have heard of. It was caught in a deep lake in MN, 2009. The man that caught it told me that it scaled at 54 pounds.



This is the biggest that I ever had in my personal collection. He was 48 pounds, stright from the wild. He went over 50 in captivity. He came from a deep lake in SC, 2007.



This was a female that I captured last year in Scott County, VA. She was over 13 pounds. One of the biggest females that I have seen, and definitely the biggest local female that I have came across.


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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:03 pm

Very nice! We use to catch them all the time when I was a kid. My first Herp was a snapper that I caught on a fishing trip back in '89. He ended up escaping after we had to fumigate and was no larger than a dollar bill. I wish I knew how big it was now.

There is also a creek around the corner from my house that isn't deep enough to get your knees wet, but there are lots of mud and minnows. They get pretty big over there and it's in the middle of the city and only a few miles from the ocean. Never thought I'd see them there. Also a bunch of EBT's.
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 6:41 pm

I have seen in them on the islands off the coast of GA and SC living in salt water. It seems they can survive almost anywhere.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 8:01 pm

That's amazing. Now that I think about, the first snapper I caught ended up biting my hook that day when I was cat fishing and I took him home because he was bleeding. The lake I caught him in is just on the other side of the road from the bay. That road has actually flooded over from hurricanes.

Do you have any plans for an albino? I've been dying for one for a while but I don't have the room for how I want to keep it, not to mention the price.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 8:34 pm

Cool
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:28 pm

i would LOVE to have an albino, but they are way out of my price range for now. once Silvia and i are doing a little better and we get moved to my family farm, i hope to put some hets in a controled pond and produce some white one. while i was staying at tom crutchfields back in 2010, he sent an adult male albino to china....he got $10,00. i can't see ever paying that for any turtle....
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:44 pm

I would like to do more turtles and tortuous but don't have that much room.
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Thu Jan 10, 2013 11:02 pm

that is an issue. i like to keep mine outside, and they take up some space...
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:02 am

here is a pic of an albino common snapper.

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allaboutthekings
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PostSubject: heres a big common snapper i saw herping   Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:33 am

[url=
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allaboutthekings
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:34 am

saw this one twice I believe
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:33 pm

I saw that pic....great looking snapper...i love seeing them in the wild...
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:16 pm

Snapping turtles are awesome!

The below VA record specimen was caught at Ft. Pickett in August 2008 by a commercial snapping turtle fisherman. The turtle weighed in at 51 lbs. (23.13 kg) with a straight-line carapace length of 18 1/3 in. (46.5 cm). The previous Virginia record was 35 lbs. (16.0 kg) with a straight-line carapace length of 16.3 in. (41.5 cm).



The largest wild-caught Eastern Snapping Turtle on record weighed 75lbs. and 86 lbs. for a captive specimen.

For what it is worth - Regarding our native turtles, including the snapping turtle:
"This species has previously been called the Common Snapping Turtle (e.g., Collins, 1997, SSAR Herpetol. Circ. 25), but the adjective has been dropped because it might be misinterpreted as referring to the abundance of the species rather than to its being the typical, most widespread species of its family."

My hope is that the same naming convention will be applied to our native snakes in the near future.
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:46 pm

There was a large male snapper taken from the same spot as the 13 pound female back in the late 90's. It was in Scott County, VA just north of Gate City. Same place that big soft shell came from. I was in Chattanooga at the time, but i was told it weighted 44 pounds. The shell is still at my mothers house. I will measure it and take a picture.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Sat Jan 12, 2013 1:53 pm

This page includes all the published turtle records for VA:

http://www.virginiaherpetologicalsociety.com/reptiles/turtles/va-turtle-measurements.pdf
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Sun Jan 13, 2013 12:55 am

i was mistaken on the weight. i was thinking it was 45 pounds, but turns out it was 35 pounds. turns out the local paper did a spotlight on it.



I measured the shell today, it was 13.75 inches long and 15 inches wide.



it was captured here (fishing pole). the creek us about 4 feet deep in the center and about 40 feet wide.



unfortunately this one was eaten, but after much lobbying by me, they no longer eat turtles. they either come to mine and Silvia's collection, or back into the creek.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Sun Jan 13, 2013 9:53 pm

That's great we need to keep our snappers in the wild.

During VHS outings we typically deploy turtle traps (live traps). Getting a couple few good size snappers in a trap is easy, getting them out can be a bit tricky.
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:22 pm

I have been curious about the live traps. Are they really LIVE traps? If using one, would I come back to find a trap full turtles that have died??? There is a spot about 100 years north of where that 35 pounder was caught. It has an old mill dam. The water behind it is slow moving, much like a pond. I swam there as a child. Certain spots are around 15 feet deep. I have always suspected there could be some monster snappers and soft shells in there. I have seen many pulled out on fishing poles, and heard many stories of lines broken by something in there. =)

How well do those traps work on deep waters?
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:54 pm

Iam curious also, they must deploy on land. Under water no air= dead turtle.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:16 pm

Chuck, you're one classy guy. I've never seen someone field herping wearing a necktie before!
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:07 pm

It’s a strategy. Reptiles figure if you are dressed for work, you wouldn’t dare grab them and risk getting muddy. So they don’t run…bam! Just like that I got’em. =)

That, or a cruised some hot spots on the way home from work…nabbed a couple before I could change. Hahaha
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:42 pm


We mainly use hoop turtle traps. They are deployed (anchored) so they are not completely underwater, allowing the turtle to breathe. Typically traps are deployed in the evening and checked first thing in the morning. Used correctly the hoop traps are very safe. I don't recall ever having a fatality.

The use of turtle traps is strictly regulated by the DGIF and requires a state issued scientific collection permit.

I think Chuck is being smart with the tie. Snapper removes a finger or two, tie makes a perfect tourniquet.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 4:14 pm

I like the theory, but I am not sure that style will work to get the 40 pound snappers I want to find. =)
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 6:58 pm

It's not a theory. It's a well established and effective method of catching turtles.
Hoop traps were designed to catch snapping and soft shelled turtles.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:28 pm

I am thinking about the size of the hoop, the 35 that came from my creek has a 15” wide shell. If there is a bigger one there, probably looking at needing the opening to be 17” inches. I’ve have not came across a hoop trap with a measurement like that.
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:10 pm

Hoop traps typically come in 30" and 36" diameter sizes:

A fairly large snapper in a 30" trap.


A decent sized turtle in a 36" trap.


The entrance to the traps is adjustable. The 36" diameter traps are for large turtles including alligator snappers.

Of course when using the large traps in addition to turtles, we often capture triceratops'. Luckily removing these guys from the traps has been deemed a "presidential duty". Larry had a rough time with this guy, but was eventually able to free it. I think he now keeps it as a pet.

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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:24 pm

Outstanding, guess I didn’t realize the size….
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:49 pm

How much do these run? I'm thinking about grabbing some WC Res or painted this spring and have not quite figured out the best way lol...
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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Tue Jan 15, 2013 11:12 pm

I dont have the RES at my place, they do not come this far west in VA. however, i can probably get you a couple painted when the time is right.

You interested in parting with either of those diamondbacks?
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:08 am

You know for a while I was going to let them go, I never really thought I wanted turtles and came o these guys by happens chance. Unfortunately I no longer want to let them go, I have become rather fond of my guys, they have great personalities and are constant enjoyment. I have been thinking bout getting a female though and breeding them in the future. Also I need to update my signature because I'm pretty sure they are Carolina DBT not Florida... the guy I got them from said they were Florida but through research I am leaning more towards Carolina... I'll post pics and see what you guys say...
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:14 am

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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:14 am

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ChuckHurd
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PostSubject: Re: Common Snaping Turtles   Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:29 pm

Well, my opinion is, they are outstanding. Will need someone with a little more diamondback tarpon experience to help you out as to the true sub sp. When Silvia and I can afford to get moved to my old family farm, I want to set up a few turtle breeding ponds, these are ones that I am hoping to breed. I guess I probably need FL more so then the NC, due to the VA laws on breeding.
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