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Taken from Bierstadt Trail in May 2010 in Rocky Mountain National Park. The sun was positively brilliant. It was a perfect day for hiking…so where does a mountain of a turtle come in?  Today while walking my dog in Wisconsin, I came upon a young girl watching over a very large snapping turtle. I was told a nearby neighbor had found the animal in his yard, then promptly dumped it out of a wheelbarrow onto a service road in the area, as he is not fond of animals.  The girl and her mom had become concerned and called the WI Humane Society Wildlife Rehab Center about what to do.

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This time of year, female turtles leave the water for dry land to dig and bury eggs, which is what this snapper was up to. Nothing needs to be done for them…except letting them do their thing. But it is kind to take them off the road if you see one, as many are hit and killed making their way across roads. Do be careful, however, if it is a snapper, as they can be quick and are certainly capable of taking off fingers. Do not move them far away at all from where you found them, as they have their territory and will be lost, if they are moved to a completely new area.  They will not be interested in eating, as the kind mom and daughter thought here, providing her with greens and apple. The female turtle will be focused on her mission.

She was a beautiful creature –  her skin complex with bumps and lines, and a tail that resembled a dragon’s. And she was big. Not a mountain but at least 14 inches in length. Given her size, she has been living on this earth for awhile. I hope she is around for many years to come.

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