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Watch your fingers

Snapping turtles are on the prowl
Snapping turtles, such as this hefty specimen, are trundling along local roadways at this time of year. Photo by Gwendolyn Craig

If you’ve never contemplated the anatomy of a turtle, you should. Its rib cage is fused to its shell, and its shoulder blades are inside the rib cage.

Now think about how you would look with your shoulders inside your ribs.

And while some turtles tuck their necks sideways into their shell, others have neck vertebrae that stack vertically, almost folding the neck inside— turtles such as the ubiqitous road-crawling snapping turtle.

What seems like a short neck on a rather cranky-looking turtle can actually extend out to approximately half the length of its shell.

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