What Does a Snapping Turtle Eat?


Quick Answer

Snapping turtles are omnivores, which means that they eat both plants and animals. They commonly feed on insects, fish, small birds, eggs, leaves and larvae. They have also been known to eat carrion, which is dead meat left behind by other predators.

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Full Answer

Snapping turtles are not picky eaters, and they adjust their diets based on what is available. Although good at defending themselves with their strong jaws and quick reaction time, snapping turtles have some predators, including larger turtles, raccoons, foxes, water snakes and largemouth bass. These predators tend to eat smaller snapping turtles, as larger snapping turtles are better able to fight back with aggression.

Snapping turtles can be found throughout North America, from Alberta, Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. They live in fresh water, and tend to spend most of their time in muddy streams and ditches with plentiful vegetation. Snapping turtles live an average of 30 years in the wild. They are solitary animals, and they tend to act aggressively towards other snapping turtles when they meet. Snapping turtles' shells are tan, brown or olive green with three ridges running across them. They are most commonly spotted in June, which is when they emerge from their watery homes to nest closer to the edges of streams.

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