|C. picta - at the lake|
|C. picta - at QUBS|
This weekend, I was wandering the shoreline in search of frogs when I noticed a small C. serpentina basking in the sun next to a log. I say 'small'; they can get very big indeed and this individual's carapace was only about 9' long (a respectable but by no means remarkable size for this species). I have encountered ones much larger than this at the lake. I remember a particularly incredible encounter with a huge one during an early morning kayak trip some years ago; I mistook its head for a log sticking out of the water but it was actually a gigantic snapper sunning itself in the shallows. It must have been at least 20' in the shell and I think that's a low estimate. It measured quite a bit longer than my kayak paddle from nose to tail, at any rate; maybe half of that was shell.
One never seems to have one's camera during such encounters, unfortunately, so we will have to content ourselves with photos of the smaller C. serpentina taken over the weekend.
It isn't uncommon for us to find tiny C. serpentina hatchlings in the bay, hiding amongst the accumulation of poplar leaves (Populus spp.).
|C. serpentina - at the lake|