Interesting facts about the Common Snapping Turtle
Snapping turtles are prehistoric - the species has existed unchanged for 200 million years!
Turtles have nerve endings in their shell, so they can actually feel when they are being touched.
Snapping turtles are slow on land, travelling under 2 km/hour on average. In water, they travel 16-19 km/hour for long distances, and can reach 35 km/hour at maximum speed.
The sex of a snapping turtle is determined by temperature! Turtle eggs incubated at 20°C and 29-31°C produce only females, while eggs incubated at 23-24°C produce only males.
Baby turtles have an "egg tooth" at the tip of their beak that they use break free from their shell and enter the world. The "tooth" falls off a few days later.
If a female turtle has been killed on a roadway, all hope is not lost. In some cases, if the female is holding any eggs, these eggs can be extracted by experts and artificially incubated until they hatch.
All turtles in Ontario hibernate underwater. A turtle will burrow into the muddy debris at the bottom of a lake, and slow down its heart rate and metabolism significantly. During hibernation, turtles can absorb oxygen through different body surfaces (including their bums)!