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Construction crew, York Region staff save 40 snapping turtles in Vaughan
Sept. 14, 2023

Forty snapping turtles were saved thanks to some quick-thinking construction workers.

As construction workers did maintenance on a culvert, they encountered a sight to behold a snapping turtle that had reached the age of maturity.

Snapping turtles are identified as a “species-at-risk” as they become endangered or threatened by environmental changes.

It takes on average about 15 to 20 years for a snapping turtle to reach maturity, and it may not make it due to environmental factors, predators, habitat disruption or other dangers like vehicles.

The construction crew, upon discovering the elder turtle and nest on the roadside, proceeded to fence off the area, instructing crew members not to touch the area until an environmental specialist arrived on the scene.

York Region staff then assessed the next and confirmed it had been disturbed by a predator the night before and that the eggs could be carefully removed and relocated.

The eggs were transported to the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre in Peterborough. The facility agreed to hatch the eggs and return them to the same sub-watershed area where they were found.