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“Raphael” the Snapping Turtle Move to a Safer Area by Hawthorne Police

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photo courtesy of the Hawthorne Police Department

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Hawthorne NJ, Due to his affinity for color, use of point perspective, and love of pizza, we’re pretty sure this is “Raphael”. Hawthorne Police Officer Forsythe moved him off the road to a safer area.

Snapping turtles can be potentially dangerous, especially if they feel threatened or cornered. They are known for their powerful jaws and sharp beaks, which they use for hunting and defending themselves. While snapping turtles are not inherently aggressive toward humans, they may bite if they perceive a threat. Here are some factors to consider:

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Bite Force: Snapping turtles have strong jaws and can deliver a powerful bite. Their bite can cause significant injury, including lacerations and broken bones.

Defensive Behavior: When approached or handled improperly, snapping turtles may react defensively by snapping their jaws. It’s essential to exercise caution when dealing with them.

Handling: If you encounter a snapping turtle in the wild or need to move one, it’s best to do so carefully and with the right equipment. It’s advisable to use a long stick or shovel to guide them into a container or gently pick them up from the rear of their shell. Never try to pick up a snapping turtle by its tail, as this can harm the animal.

Respect Wildlife: In general, it’s best to observe wildlife from a safe distance and avoid interfering with their natural behaviors.

While snapping turtles can be dangerous when provoked, they play an important role in the ecosystem by helping to control aquatic populations of insects, fish, and other organisms. If you encounter a snapping turtle in the wild and need assistance, it’s a good idea to contact local wildlife authorities or a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for guidance on how to handle the situation safely.

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