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Snapping Turtle Laying Eggs at Little Acorn Learning

This morning I woke up and had a cup of coffee. I thought about what to blog. Maybe I’ll update you all on the Roselette Top progress or more about my recent career decisions. Eh.

Sometimes the universe gives me a little helping hand with my writer’s block.

This beautiful Mother Turtle came across the street to our front yard and was very sweet and pleasant. She was not afraid of us and did not seem to get aggravated by my girls “ooohing” and “ahhhing” at her. She took a walk down my path and a peek at my garden near the daycare door.

After putting the girls on the bus, my daycare children arrived and we noticed that she had dug a hole. I quickly realized she unbelievably decided to lay her eggs in our yard.

How wonderful!

It took quite awhile… she made many digging movements and movements similar to labor. I wasn’t sure she was really laying anything as I kept looking but could not see eggs.  I later found out that they carefully cover each and every egg with a bit of dirt after laying.

A bit later she walked off. We went to go see her nest and were disappointed not to see any eggs. I gently removed some dirt from the top of the area and still nothing.

I figured that we scared her off. But then I decided to go a bit deeper just in case.  And much, much deeper we discovered her amazing eggs!  I couldn’t believe how packed the dirt was and how deep they were.  It was like she was never there.

I want to give these little turtles the best chance I can to survive. I normally do not agree with messing around with nature but I somehow feel part of the process this time.  I struggled with whether or not to intervene.  Our front yard is not a very safe place. Our cat, dogs and local racoons and coyotes frequent the area.

After a lot of online research, I decided to carefully transfer her eggs into a bucket filled with soil, peat moss and wet paper towels. Each egg must be handled with the utmost care and not turned upside down or the turtles may not make it. I gently transferred between 30-35 amazing white turtle eggs to their new incubator one by one as the children sat quietly and watched.  One little girl kept asking where the mommy went.  Snapping Turtles do not care for their young at all.  They lay their eggs and go back to their home.  I explained that the mommy went home and we will take good care of her babies.

We covered the eggs with some soil and placed the bucket in our fenced in garden and will cover it with a screen for safety. Animals are unable to get in our garden which is good.  We may even move it into our home in the evenings to ensure they survive.  We’ll see.

The eggs are supposed to hatch within 50-100 days. I will be sure to post photos of their birth and release into the wild if it all works out ok.

Such a very exciting day. I have a rush. This was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I am so grateful this sweet creature chose my home today.

I wonder if it is some sort of a spiritual sign after my recent difficult decision.

“A tortoise at the back door of a house or in the backyard by a pond is said to attract good fortune and many blessings.”  hmmmm what’s the spiritual significance of a snapping turtle laying eggs in your front yard?

🙂

7 thoughts on “Snapping Turtle Laying Eggs at Little Acorn Learning”

  1. Hi there! I understand how you feel. We struggled with whether or not to incubate the eggs too. I also believe in leaving nature be but in this case, the location where the turtle laid the eggs was very unsafe. It was right where my husband mows and where our dogs and cat go outside to play. We also have a lot of coyotes that come to our front yard and other predators. We were very mindful with transferring the eggs and hope to release the babies into a nature reserve near our home. xoxo

  2. Hi there! I understand how you feel. We struggled with whether or not to incubate the eggs too. I also believe in leaving nature be but in this case, the location where the turtle laid the eggs was very unsafe. It was right where my husband mows and where our dogs and cat go outside to play. We also have a lot of coyotes that come to our front yard and other predators. We were very mindful with transferring the eggs and hope to release the babies into a nature reserve near our home. xoxo

  3. You should have left them alone! A friends of mine has a turtle come back every year and lay her eggs in their yard and each year they get to see them hatch. Let nature be! Disappointed!

  4. You should have left them alone! A friends of mine has a turtle come back every year and lay her eggs in their yard and each year they get to see them hatch. Let nature be! Disappointed!

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