Sunday, November 11, 2012

Weighing the Conservatory's Alligator Snapping Turtle!

Melissa Carlberg and her students from Beecher Hill Elementary School came, as part of their after school studies program here at The Garden, to help me weigh 'Big Carmine' (our resident Alligator Snapping Turtle, Macrochelys temminckii) Big Carmine lives in the largest of the seven ponds inside the rotunda, under the bridge (photos by Julia Rittenhouse).

One of the Beecher Hills students helping me fasten the waders. You can see the scale in the background.

The students of Beecher Hills Elementary cheering me on as I am about to enter the pond with an  Alligator  Snapping turtle

Here we are -  I am demonstrating one way to safely lift and hold a large snapper

We all made guesses, but Big Carmine is actually not so 'big' weighing only 26 pounds. Adults of this species can break 200 pounds!