Last night marked the third installment of The "No Soup for You!" Snapping Turtle Count.
It also marked the first Snapping Turtle captured at the count...the previous two weeks have been so incredibly hot and humid that the turtles have been hunkered down in the muck.
Yesterday...we arrived to find the absolute best possible scenario...a Snapping Turtle traversing his way across the muddy marsh top. And when we say muddy...we mean...MUDDY!
He wasn't a monster...but was the absolute perfect size for comfortable presentation. Trying to present to a group of people with a 40 lb plus turtle is actually really difficult, not to mention dangerous.
This specimen was the perfect size for kids to come up and pet, get a good look at and admire. All while Coyote could easily keep the reptile under control. At 18 lbs, 12in carapace and about 10 years of age...he was easy to keep an eye and stable hand on.
We have been having great turnouts the past few weeks as the count has pressed forward, last night was our biggest crowd yet so we were thrilled to have found and captured a turtle right from the start.
All sorts of great questions were asked about these reptiles habitats, behaviorisms, and of course some folklore. We presented for a good hour, shared pictures of the 45lb beast captured on Sunday and then headed back into the marsh to look for more monsters.
We shot some great sequences about the environment...
Challenged some really deep mud...
Tangled with crazy marsh plants that tried to swallow Coyote whole...
And had a great time doing it all!
While we didn't find any more Snapping Turtles we did capture a good looking Northern Water Snake...
Who decided to bite Coyote when he was being released...
and a cute little Northern Two Lined Salamander.
It was a great third installment to our four part series and if things continue to progress as they have...next week should be incredible! Claws Crossed!
Big thanks to our fantastic cinematographer Chammp Swaggerty for braving the elements, the Marsh-Mud-Man Mark Vins for his stellar photographs and field note extraordinare C- Money for jotting down all the field marks on this evenings captures.
Also a huge thanks to The Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks, specifically the folks at Blendon Woods Metro Park for letting us host this event and all of their help in promoting and planning it, you guys and gals are the best!
If you would like to see a complete set of last week and last nights pictures visit the Facebook page...maybe you even made a picture! So take a look explorers!
I'm Coyote Peterson...and this...is The REPTILE Show!