Snapping Turtles

Ben unexpectedly stumbles upon the largest freshwater turtle in Canada

Whilst gliding effortlessly across the water the absence of any wind made my morning canoe all the more enjoyable and as per usual I had my eyes fixated in to the water in the hope of seeing either the beaver, the otter, or, as pictured below, sat on top of a log, one of many freshwater Painted Turtles that seem to call this beaver pond home.

It was to my utter surprise then when beneath the vegetation I first spotted what seemed to be a large rock. But this rock had eyes. And a neck. And a tail. I had no idea what it was but it looked positively disgusting.

Once my initial repulsion had subsided I became surprisingly fixated. This dorsal creature had obviously clocked me and without moving a muscle I presumed it to be playing dead which with me wanting to study this thing further I was more than happy for it to do so.

I found it so amazing that in this little pond dammed up by just a couple of beavers, an animal this size was lurking. Crusted in dirt, the top of its shell gave it the appearance of an animal you`d be forgiven for thinking belonged in Jurassic Park and whilst making my way back to the house I secretly hoped I had an unearthed some prehistoric creature.

But it was not to be. It in fact it turned out to be the common snapping turtle which according to Google is the largest freshwater turtle in Canada! Its shell can reach an impressive 50cm (19.5in) and weighing in at 15kg (33lbs) it is estimated they can live 70 years in the wild, perhaps even longer.

Either way, this awesome creature completely made my day!