Common Snapping Turtle

Basic Information:

Scientific Name: Chelydra serpentina

Habitat: Snapping turtles are mostly aquatic and can be found in a wide variety of aquatic habitats in to United States to the east of the Rocky Mountains.

Diet: Common snapping turtles are omnivores that feed on plants, insects, spiders, worms, fish, frogs, small turtles, snakes, birds, crayfish, small mammals, and carrion. Plant matter accounts for about a third of the diet.

Size: 0.7 to 2 feet long

Weight: 10 to 75 pounds

Lifespan: 50 to 75 years

Distribution Map:

I.U.C.N. Conservation Status:

What does this mean?

Least Concern – a species determined by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (I.U.C.N.) to be pervasive, abundant, and thriving.

Our Common Snapping Turtle:

Lucky (Male) – Estimated Birthdate Between May 2001 & May 2005

Did You Know?!

  • Common snapping turtles like to bury themselves in mud with only their nostrils and eyes exposed. They ambush their prey by lunging forward with the head at high speed and powerful jaws to seize prey.
  • Common snapping turtles evolved about 40 million years ago and are the ancestors of about 80% of all the turtles today.
  • Because snapping turtles spend so much time motionless in the water, their shell commonly grows algae and moss.