Animal Facts
    Common Name:
    Alligator Snapping Turtle
    Scientific Name:
    Macrochelys temminckii
    • Live alone in swamps, canals, rivers, and lakes
    • Can stay underwater for 45 minutes before taking another breath
    • Use a worm-like projection on tongue to "fish" for prey
    175 lb
    2.5 ft
    Life Span:
    50 yrs
    Gestation Period:
    90 days
    Number of Young:
    25 eggs
    • Aquatic (freshwater)
    Fun Facts:
    • Their life span may reach or exceed 100 years.
    • May remain so still underwater that algae grows on the shell.
    • Males are much larger than females and may be over three feet long and weigh more than 200 pounds.
    • Habitat Loss
    • Poaching / Over Consumption
    • Pollution
    Endangered Status
    Endangered Status
    • Extinct in Wild (EW)
    • Critically Endangered (CR)
    • Endangered (EN)
    • Vulnerable (VU)
    • Near Threatened (NT)
    • Least Concern (LC)
    • Not Evaluated (NE)

    Their Zoo habitat reflects a river bottom and lets the snapping turtle wait patiently on the bottom, luring a fish in close before striking.  Although the turtle will respond to keepers when cued to feed, it often simply sits and waits.