Henderson Police Department warns public to not touch alligator snapping turtle

Long time hidden Henderson resident has recently made himself popular with the help of Facebook. 

Snappy, the alligator snapping turtle, was brought to the attention of the public Monday following a Facebook post by Henderson Police Department.

Snappy is roughly 80 years old, based on the size of its shell, and residing near and in Lake Forest. 

Looking like it’s from the dinosaur age, Snappy can be dangerous. The public is asked to use extreme caution around it and to not touch because he will bite.

HPD had plans to relocate Snappy to the water department where he could spend his days in peace. However, after speaking with Game Warden Kirk Clendening that plan has been haulted. 

“They mentioned that it could have eggs right now and to try to hold off, if possible,” said HPD Lt. Brian Bathke. “So right now we are going to try and keep everybody aware and safe with it.” 

Another concern is that Snappy might be looking for its mate and that would be why it continues to travel from the lake.

Snappy is usually spotted crossing West Fordall from Lake Forest or near Sand St. 

Alligator snapping turtles are described as dinosaur like because of their spiky shells. 

According the National Wildlife Federation, they are found from nothern Florida to eastern Texas and as far north as Iowa.

According to the Texas Parks and Wildlife website, areas affected by recent flooding are more prone to sightings of this specific turtle.

The public is urged to call HPD if Snappy wanders off and officers will help get him back to the park or new location. If spotted please call 903-657-3521. 

Also it is asked to use caution driving near Lake Forest since Snappy likes to wander and it would cause a lot of damage or, his life, if Snappy gets hit. 

The NWF states that the only predator to Snappy and other full grown adult turtles is humans.

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