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Press x2: Turtles bring Terror! Film @11

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Posted by: W von Papineäu at Fri Jun 13 17:57:50 2008  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by W von Papineäu ]  

"The horror, the horror!"
"Fear the Turtle!"

WINONA DAILY NEWS (Minnesota) 13 June 08 Snapping turtles bring ‘terror’ into town (Kevin Behr)
The Goodview Police Department had their hands full last week.
Full of turtles.
Roving snapping turtles forced citizens to call the police three times in the past eight days. One turtle was trampling bushes June 5 in a yard on West Sixth Street.
Another was tanning itself Saturday in the middle of Sixth Street and was deemed a traffic hazard, Goodview Police Chief LaVern Hauschildt said.
The third was walking around a yard Sunday afternoon on 46th Avenue.
Is it the same culprit with nothing better to do than terrorize a few blocks of residential Goodview?
“I’m sure there’s more than one snapping turtle in Goodview,” Hauschildt said.
Each turtle was taken either to “better” or more “natural” habitat at a park or to Bartlett Lake behind the Winona Municipal Airport, according to police.
June is the prime month for snapping turtles to leave their wet, muddy habitats to find a dry spots to lay their clutches of 20 to 30 eggs.
“They come out of the swamp and we’re in the way,” Hauschildt said.
The turtles have been more of a time-sucking nuisance than a danger to citizens, he said. Hauschildt said his officers had to spend about a half-hour to remove and relocate each turtle, and that takes away from other duties.
“What are you gonna do? It’s part of our job,” he said. “We don’t want big ol’ snapping turtles in residential areas with kids and pets.”
Emphasis on the “big.” They’re not your run-of-the-mill box turtle. Hauschildt said he saw some that had shells between 10 and 12 inches in diameter.
But during a week of stories about floods, bridge closures, murder and tornadoes, gravid snapping turtles (meaning they carry eggs) are a nice distraction.
“It’s not a real tough subject,” Hauschildt said.

PROVINCETOWN BANNER (Massachusetts) 12 June 08 Terror and the turtle at Crystal Lake (Peter Budryk)
“There’s a thin line between fishing and just standing on the shore like an idiot.”- Comedian Steven Wright
This metaphorical observation is both real and comic, but it can sometimes also describe bearing witness to a near tragedy.
It is with unease and regret that I file this report. It does not relate directly to fishing but it occurred on the water, on the Lower Cape, witnessed by a fisherman, who watched it unfold but was helpless to do anything more than to stand on the shore like an idiot.
Last Saturday evening, after a long day of soothing the muscles of a number of her clients, Jennifer, proprietor of the popular Beach Road Massage Therapy, before heading home for dinner and to soothe her own muscles, went for a swim with a friend in Orleans’ Crystal Lake.
This was a body of water she had avoided swimming for a number of years after warnings she had heard.
Enjoying the cool water and the lovely evening, Jennifer told me she began to feel relaxed and basked in this natural water therapy, kicking out a hundred yards from shore, not wanting to spoil the fishing for the angler at the beach where she and her friend had waded in quietly. Little did she suspect what was about to happen to her.
As an angler who often wades wet, or in wading boots, and often fishing in a belly boat (A covered inner tube with a seat through which your legs, with fins attached to the feet, can be inserted), I realized Jennifer’s experience was my worst nightmare come true. I had had several near misses over the years, after which I raced home recovering from my fright and babbling incoherently to my disbelieving family.
Seeing nothing out of the ordinary in her watery idyll and without any warning, Jennifer suddenly felt something violently and painfully ripping into the flexed muscle of her thigh and attempting to stop the forward motion of her swimming.
A strong swimmer all her life who held WSI certification for many years, taught swimming to hundreds of youngsters, and is a trained and certified outdoor leader who, after graduation from Springfield College, spent a month on the water and in the wilds of Alaska in a Wesleyan University (CT) course, the National Standard Program for Outdoor Leadership Certification, Jennifer is a skilled and confident outdoors person.
So she did what she knew instinctively she had to do to save herself. After emitting a howling scream that shocked the gulls and ducks into panicked flight and captured the attention of everybody along the shore, including the fisherman who was now suddenly transmuted into an idiot, Jennifer fought off the attacker’s grip by kicking her well muscled legs into instant overdrive and finally, gratefully, felt the creature’s grip work free.
When she made it to the shore, splashing toward the anguished angler, he screamed to her,
“What happened to you?”
“I think I must have been attacked by a snapping turtle!” she answered.
“No way”, he said. “They don’t attack people!”
“Oh yeah?” Jennifer shot back, “Take a look at this!”
Jennifer lifted her leg, revealing the bleeding and perfect outline of a turtle’s upper and lower jaw.
“Jeez,” the chagrined angler must have thought, “Now I feel like an idiot.”
Wrapping a towel around her thigh, Jennifer biked to her friend, Nancy Parker’s home. Nancy, an experienced R.N. who at one time worked a stint at the Orleans Medical Center, had once treated a terrified snapping turtle bite victim.
After cleansing and applying antiseptic to the wounds, Nancy contacted the Poison Control Center to assure Jennifer there was little likelihood of a turtle borne infection, but advised her to update her tetanus inoculation.
Knowing she had undergone different medical treatment needs, including first aid for bruises and abrasions from trying single handedly to rescue a floundering 200 pound ocean sunfish on the outer beach, and even hospitalization on an IV, from two cats’ and a dog’s bite, Nancy suggested maybe it was time for Jennifer to stay away from the woods, waters and animals for a spell and perhaps relax in a lounge chair.
Do I believe this story? Well, we raised her to be an honest person. Jennifer Budryk came to my house to show us the wounds and elicit a little parental sympathy. I took the picture of the bite. Hopefully, Jennifer now has a little more respect for her father’s tales of near snapper attacks.
I guess all’s well that ends well. To brighten the episode, I called up another old line, again, not a fishing line, but close enough:
“If you’re swimming in the creek and something bites you on your cheek, that’s a moray.”
I know, that’s pretty bad.
Until next week, respecting that thin line whether you’re fishing from a boat or from the shore (I doubt you’ll be wading for a while.) I wish you lots of tugs and fishes.


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