Common Snapper Active in February

On February 17, 2012, in the Alpine Boat Basin, Alpine, NJ (7 miles north of the George Washington Bridge), Frank Indiviglio and his 4-year-old nephew Haiden discovered a large male common snapper in the water at edge of 3 by 5 foot pool. A small stream from the forest area above created a short waterfall to form the pool, which was approximately 4 feet deep at the deep end. Water exited as a stream across a picnic area and into the Hudson River several hundred feet away.

It’s possible the turtle moved up that stream to hibernate; it seems unlikely the pool could support him year-round. When handled, he was able to open his mouth but did not move much. He was cold (temperatures ranged in the low 40s that day) and did not attempt to strike. He sank back into deepest section of pool and moved below a ledge when released.

Click images to enlarge.

Haiden is delighted by large snapping turtle.

Snapper opens his mouth, but he is cold and does not strike.

Pond with waterfall and snapper at the edge

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