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Discussion Starter #1
Just saw the post re: carrying a snapping turtle.

My question is...how do you catch the thing? The previous owners of our place built an inground pool--24' x 48', 4' in the shallow end, 8' in the deep end (they had lots of family who used it). We haven't had time to open and enjoy it for the last 3 summers and now we have a snapper living in it that is a good 8-9" long. He's cleaned out the "sliders" we had last year as well as the frogs that helped to keep the mosquitoes under control. We are amazed he's even in there because the pool is fenced with 2" x 4" welded wire 3' tall.

We'd prefer to trap him and take him to the creek but don't know how. If that's not an option, what sort of tackle would work to catch him. No way, no how, no time, nu-uh, am I going into that pool to even start the cleaning process until that critter is gone. The pool does have a cover over it but the sun has degraded holes big enough that he can get under the cover.

If I knew then what I know now about swimming pools, expense, work to keep them clean, etc., I would have voted against buying this place. If I found myself living here alone (God forbid) I'd probably have it filled in immediately. Right now, the best thing I can say about it is that it represents 42,000 gallons of fire suppression.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
 

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Try and get him to clamp onto a stick or a broom handle. Then transfer him to a 5 gal bucket, sometimes they don't let go for awhile so just leave him hanging over the bucket. If that don't work try a chicken leg tied to a clothes line and pull him in.
Make a five gallon bucket into a seive by drilling holes into it, bait bucket then slowly lift it up once turtle is inside.
To catch them by hand we would always step on them and force them down into the mud making them withdrawal their head and then fish them out by hand grabbing his butt and just behind his head. Their necks can reach out about a third of their length or better. Not having any mud would be tricky. My personal best is a 65 pounder handfished out of a drainage ditch.

A well placed 22 short round will also work wonders as they surface to breath. Be mindful of the bullet skipping and avoid that.
 

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Pump it out using a 1/2 hp sump pump. You'll need to do that to clean the junk out anyway. Then you can push him into a bucket and move him.

He probably walked in as a baby.
 

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grannyclampett said:
My granny always said that if a snapping turtle bit you, he wouldn't let go until it thundered.

They didn't ever have to let go with me,they just bit off a hunk :help:

big rockpile
 

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I've been bitten a couple of times. We used to like catching them in the ponds when I was growing up. Unless they get a finger or other loose appendage (and if the appendage they get isn't a finger then we don't want to know what you were doing) then there's no real damage. Their jaws can't open wide enough to take a really big bite and they aren't going to hang on there forever, just until they think it's in their best interest to let go. A cigarette lighter held underneath their butt works fine for that ... they'll let go of whatever they've gotten to try and take a bite out of the second torment. Just try and be faster than that second bite or you've got further problems.


On the rare occasion I find myself handling turtles now, I use a pair of heavy welding gloves. You can feel the pressure but they can't get through the leather. I'm slower than I used to be and those dang necks can almost reach around and bite their own butt.
 

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As long as it's in the water, you probably won't be able to get it to latch onto anything to carry. We could never get them to hang on for long when we wanted to behead one.

Pump out the pool! Then just a landing net or five gallon pail.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Completely pumping out the pool would ruin the lining--big bucks. We only see him out the kitchen window. Shooting isn't an option due to the danger of skipping, hitting the lining or a neighbor's house. If he sees us, he's gone. I've talked to a pool guy who suggested just putting in enough chemicals to kill it and be done with it.

My clothes line is about 15' from one side of the pool and while I was hanging out laundry this morning, I heard something splashing under the edge of the pool cover on the far side. It occurred 3-4 times over the course of 10 minutes or so. Whatever it was, it was big enough to shake the cover. No, sir, I'm not going in for love or money.

Thanks again.
 

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Snapping turtles don't do as much sunning as sliders so could it be that the splash you are hearing is a slider?

You could try a live trap with some fish or raw meat for bait. They will come to food and can smell.
 

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Reminds me of that famous photo taken at the Woodstock music festival in 1969 of all those hippie kids -- male and female -- skinny dipping in the pond. A couple weeks later, a Vermont turtle hunter came in and took something like 400 pounds of snapping turtles out of that pond.

High pucker factor on that one.
 
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