Snap chat in Forest Hills

Snapping turtle in Forest Hills Cemetery

Mike Ball reports on the different animals he saw on a walk around Forest Hills Cemetery the other day, including this snapping turtle in Lake Hibiscus:

It was pretty creepy. It came from maybe 30 feet off-shore and surfaced just below me by the tiny rocky beach. As I moved about 100 feet along the shore, it tracked me. I began to feel like it was viewing me as a two-legged fish…a snack.

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    Critters are having a comeback.

    I saw deer yards on the old Shaffer pier in Dorchester last week and an egret counter revolution to thwart the turkeys. Raccoon hold court at dawn near Union Square and coyotes walk the railroad yard wastes in December.

    Raptors are everywhere you wanna be. They run from Inman peregrines to Quincy ospreys and eagles regularly pass through. There's potential bobcat habitat, likely otters along river ways, observable beavers and muskrats and a very elaborate lacework of trails and open space nodes within the 495 circle.

    Periodic moose and bear incursions are ever likely.

    I was bushwhacking along the Charles on the Newton/Needham border yesterday and was exploring another section of the metro sewer berm road in Fowl Meadow today where a new state park element of Blue Hills just opened to speed up the linkage between the river mouth at Port Norfolk and the Warner Trail in Sharon.

    There are basically something like 3 new Minuteman trails in the works in key corridors.

    I'm flatly blown away by how fast all this is happening now that the planning stages are done.

    There have been deer and

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    There have been deer and coyotes along the Neponset in the Port Norfolk area for years. Sometimes you can see them walking over the commuter rail tracks from the Quincy marsh. There are little cottontails running around as well. Many ospreys around this year too, lots of different birds pass through, pretty exciting!

    I've seen people throw

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    I've seen people throw chicken parts to the big snapping turtle in Lake Hibiscus. The thing is huge and obese - it can barely fit in its shell for the rolls of fat bulging out. It's also quite tame, understandably, for a snapping turtle.

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    That makes sense.

    Snappers usually avoid us but if one got used to humans and that kind of quality hand out, it would be as glad as a reptile can be to see one of us.

    It's probably hoping for some pepperoni.

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    Diet?

    Would they be better off with raw fish or maybe hunt their own crayfish from under the leaves?
    I wonder how much this human diet is harmful to them.

    Captain Killjoy, over and out...

    There's at least 4-5 snapping

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    There's at least 4-5 snapping turtles in that pond, and they're all used to being fed. We saw a guy feeding one bread and watermelon bits, he said they loved it, so we tried it ourselves the next time. We stuck pieces of bread and watermelon on sticks, they'll eat it right off the stick. Of course, they're still snapping turtles and, well, snap, so they'll sometimes break the stick. Do not get your fingers close to them.