This past weekend we officially wrapped our summer filming for The Reptile Show test pilot. Yes we are sad that the cameras have stopped rolling...but at the same time a little relieved, considering we have shot close to 60 hours of footage.
Post production officially begins this week and our fantastical captain/editor Chris Kost will now take the wheel and drive our summer of cuts, scrapes, bruises, spiders, snakes, leeches, and monster snapping turtles to the next level.
This doesn't mean however that the adventures are over...no way...its only September and that means another 2 months of reptile activity still exist. So while the adventures will be without a full camera crew...there will still be some daring antics left to come.
A couple weeks back we shared with you the catch of a monster Snapping Turtle at Ashton Pond located in Blacklick Woods Metro Park. We took a second expedition there and our results were but two lbs short of our previous expedition.
A 45 lb Snapping Turtle, which was captured 2 weeks ago, is a real monster. A 43 lb Snapping Turtle...no less impressive. Mash-MudMan Mark Vins and Coyote Peterson set off to Ashton Pond at about 7:00 AM. Almost immediately Coyote located a carapace (top of the shell) floating on the surface of the pond and went after what was to be a very large turtle.
The catch was pretty difficult, all of which was shot on camera and will be used in the test pilot. It was one of those "Go Neck Deep - or - Go Home Soggy and Empty Handed" catches. Well as luck would have it...the beast was wrangled and fought back up onto the boardwalk for a high-class, celebrity like showering of flashes, ooohs and aaaahhhs from on looking photographers.
Here are some of the best pics....Enjoy!
This was just after Coyote hoisted the turtle up onto the observation deck...that sign says "No Petting or Feeding the Animals". This probably isn't an animal you would want to be feeding or petting...but jumping into deep water to capture it...why not! (Note...The Reptile Show and its cast and crew have been issued permits by the ODNR and The Franklin County and Columbus Metro Parks - DO NOT attempt to ever capture one of these animals without the proper skills and permits)
This Common Snapping Turtle recorded in with a 17 inch carapace, 19.5 in. width, 17 inch long tail, nearly 3ft nose to tail tip, 42 inches in circumference and a weight of 43 lbs. We estimate that this turtle was around 35-45 years old...a real monster!
Of every turtle captured this summer...this one in particular is number 37, we have never encountered a more field guide perfect specimen.
Claws were enormous, some almost 2 inches in length.
17 inch tail that was nearly as big around as Coyote's arm at the base.
Razor sharp jaws and a perfect beak...most of the time these turtles beaks are all chewed up and broken from biting and chewing through food. The turtles living in Ashton Pond eat mostly frogs and fish...nice soft tender delights.
This capture was one of the best looking turtles of summer and a great way to end our filming. Blacklick Woods Metro Park is the oldest metro park in Columbus...this means protected waters and at least 50 untouched years of growth for the turtles living in Ashton Pond. Its an incredible place to see some real prehistoric beasts and the observation deck gives you a rare look out onto the water...keep your eyes peeled, look for the bubble trails and moving lily pads and you might just sneak a peek at one of these incredible turtles.
I'm Coyote Peterson...and this...is The REPTILE Show!