CHESTERVILLE — This good-sized snapping turtle turned up for a snooze yesterday beside the front stoop of Scott Hopkins’ Mill Street home in Chesterville.
Hopkins said he first spied the reptilian visitor underneath his van, parked on the street, as he prepared to leave for work at 6 a.m. that morning. With the assistance of his wife, he gently maneuvered the vehicle away from the curb without touching the lethargic creature. The animal eventually stirred and pulled itself over the adjacent sidewalk and over to its daylong resting spot, where it remained into the evening.
Its heavy claws splayed out and dinosaur-like tail drooped over the concrete, the turtle appeared very docile — with no hint of the defensive hissing and angry open mouth the species sometimes displays when approached on land.
Hopkins said the snapper finally walked away later at night, returning to the nearby South Nation River. The snapping turtle is listed as a “species of concern” in Ontario, under the Species at Risk Act, a designation that does not afford it particular extra protection, according to information on the province’s website.