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#485078 - 01/09/18 02:56 PM Snappers Under the Ice
Quarter Acre Offline


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 604
Loc: West Central Missouri
I went to the pond last Saturday morning for a look-see as it has been too cold to want to venture up there recently, only to find 3 snapping turtles visible through the ice. They were alive, but very sluggish. The ice was about 8 inches thick and clear. There is no way for them to get to the surface to get air and the pond has been frozen over for about 2 weeks. Man, those things are hardy.

I can only assume that they have come close to the ice so that their metabolism will slow way down compared to being on the bottom where the temps are likely around 50 degrees F with no food or oxygen. My pond has no fish in it yet, but they must be living off the fallen FHM's and tadpoles. BUT, with no air to breath...they are amazing!





Attachments
Turtle Under the Ice 01.jpg (684 downloads)
Turtle Under the Ice.jpg (661 downloads)



Edited by Quarter Acre (01/09/18 03:03 PM)
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#485081 - 01/09/18 04:25 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
canyoncreek Offline


Registered: 05/07/13
Posts: 1783
Loc: West Michigan
Beautiful ice! It would give me pause to skate on that (not that it wouldn't hold me but it would be eerie to see so far down). Kind of like walking on this new rage in China, the glass bridges!

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#485084 - 01/09/18 05:38 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
KapHn8d Offline


Registered: 10/02/17
Posts: 153
Loc: TX
Maybe someone will correct me here, but I think they can do this because of 3 things working together...

1) they can slow their metabolism by 99+% when water temps are near freezing

2) the specific heat of water allows for relatively stable temperatures throughout this period (meaning their bodies don't have to react to change)

3) they have dense vascular areas near certain surface of parts of their body (like the rear end) that can actually leverage dissolved oxygen in the water as a source as water passes over the surface of the skin/vein walls

Since they require so very little oxygen to support their extremely depreciated metabolic state, this is enough to keep them alive until things get better... so to speak...

Am I off base here?

Pretty fascinating stuff!
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#485085 - 01/09/18 05:45 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
Zep Offline
Hall of Fame 2014


Registered: 07/27/10
Posts: 3070
Loc: Dallas & Wills Point, Tx
reminds me of the story recently about the "Frozen Alligators"

Frozen Alligators in North Carolina Survival Tactic

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#485087 - 01/09/18 05:56 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4127
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
I saw a snapper in a stream that runs through our place during very cold weather following unusually warm weather. I am afraid the warm weather fools them and the cold weather will kill them. I have found dead snappers during such weather events.

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#485100 - 01/09/18 08:47 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
CMM Offline


Registered: 10/07/12
Posts: 615
Loc: West Central MO
Quarter Acre,

I was out on my ice on Saturday. We are close to each other, I think, geographically speaking. I saw 5 turtles (sliders, not snappers) under the ice moving along the bottom in what would be 3' of water. Also, no open water for them to take a breath. You are right, they are amazing creatures.
I also saw 3 small schools of 1-2" fish, a hibernating frog and 1 G$$ D%)M muskrat swimming quite happily under the ice.

It was a great day and seeing the bottom of the pond and the life that lives under it, even during the deepest of winter, was a reminder of how wonderful and variable this life we have is.
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#485109 - 01/10/18 08:46 AM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
Quarter Acre Offline


Registered: 06/10/16
Posts: 604
Loc: West Central Missouri
If you can believe what you find on the web...I did some reading about turtles and frozen waters to discover that the painted turtles can actually freeze under the right conditions and recover. There was a statement in the article that led me to think that snapping turtles might display the same traits. The article...

https://blog.nature.org/science/2017/01/30/turtles-under-ice-winter-survival-hibernation-adaptation/
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#485111 - 01/10/18 09:10 AM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4127
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
Looks like snappers share this ability with painted turtles:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12529844

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#485122 - 01/10/18 11:27 AM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
DonoBBD Offline


Registered: 06/13/12
Posts: 1892
Loc: Ontario, Canada, Eh.
Up in Canada here we see this all the time.

Trapping when I was a kid, for muskrat, I can remember coming across a few snappers. One I thought was a rock and was in the way of my set. I laid down on the shore to get a good lift on the rock. As it pulled it up I was nose to nose with a young snapper about 12"s across. Thank the lord the water was so cold it was really slow. I dropped that rock so fast and rolled away from the bank it would make your head spin.

Cheers Don.
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#485123 - 01/10/18 12:21 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
Matzilla Offline


Registered: 08/12/16
Posts: 319
Loc: Iowa
There are some guys here in the midwest that will spear them through the ice - they claim they taste better vs catching and eating in the warmer months.

I've seen active painted turtles through the ice while fishing and they're quite fun to watch sometimes
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LMB, BG, YP, WE, HSB, RES, BCP

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#485129 - 01/10/18 01:58 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
wbuffetjr Offline


Registered: 08/16/14
Posts: 795
Loc: in the mountains
Learn something new everyday! I had no idea they could survive with no air....


Edited by wbuffetjr (01/10/18 01:58 PM)
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#485130 - 01/10/18 03:41 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
Mal Offline


Registered: 09/23/17
Posts: 25
Loc: SW Virginia
Snappers are amazingly resilient. I found a newly hatched one in the front yard. I was certain it was dead; totally dried up, stiff and about the weight of a potato chip. For no more than curiosity, i put it in a bowl of water. To my amazement, it recovered completely.
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#485422 - 01/20/18 11:05 AM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
Dsatter84 Offline


Registered: 11/11/17
Posts: 12
Loc: Ohio
Painted turtles can definitely freeze, I had an experience with it happening. We live in Akron Ohio and when I was around 16 we took a 2 week family vacation. I had a painted turtle (named Petey lol) that lived on our front porch in a tilted 20 gallon long half water half dry. I believe it was around March or April and while we were gone had unseasonably cold weather. Came home and he was completely submerged and all the water was frozen solid. We all thought he was obviously dead but I carefully chiseled him out and brought him inside as a frozen block of ice. Sat with him by the register vent while he thawed out. All of a sudden his tail popped out followed by his head and he was completely fine. Unsure how long he was completely frozen but amazing none the less.

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#485423 - 01/20/18 12:26 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Dsatter84]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 4834
Loc: SE Kansas
Wife showed me a picture yesterday, think it was on facebook, of an alligator snapper under the ice with a guy laying on the ice above and beside it. It looked to be 2-3' long. Was laying on the bottom under the ice. In Arkansas somewhere.
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#485431 - 01/21/18 06:43 AM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: snrub]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4127
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...


Edited by RAH (01/21/18 08:03 AM)

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#485445 - 01/21/18 03:52 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: RAH]
snrub Offline


Registered: 10/05/13
Posts: 4834
Loc: SE Kansas
That's the one.

That size turtle would make a guy think twice about skinny dipping in that lake!


Edited by snrub (01/21/18 03:53 PM)
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#485473 - 01/22/18 02:11 PM Re: Snappers Under the Ice [Re: Quarter Acre]
RAH Offline
Lunker

Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 4127
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...

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