Animals Wow!


The reptile is apparently building a nest.

OK, maybe that headline is a bit dramatic, but we couldn’t quite believe our eyes when we saw this photo circulating on social media. Brambleton resident Wendy Wade posted it Saturday morning and it’s already created a bit of a stir.

It seems Wade and her family noticed something had dug up and made a big mess of the mulch and dirt around some shrubs in her backyard. Not coincidentally, that backyard backs up to a stream that runs into a pond in the neighborhood. When the Wades looked closer, the realized a large snapping turtle was building a nest there.

They estimate the turtle might weigh as much as 30 pounds and say it’s larger than a laptop computer. Wade calls it “huge.”

Check out that Godzilla tail.

They called a local wildlife expert who told them the turtle was probably preparing to lay eggs. He suggested they leave the eggs untouched as they would likely die otherwise. They should hatch in 80-90 days. Another Ashburn resident who had a similar close encounter with a snapping turtle posted that after the eggs hatch, mama and the kids should all disappear, probably headed back to nearby creeks and ponds.

Wade hopes their temporary zoological exhibit will be a good learning experience for her kids.

Images: Wendy Wade
  1. Jim 5 years ago

    Average size. Should have just let drop the eggs.

  2. Aimee 5 years ago

    Why is this a news story? And yes, a bit too dramatic of a headline.

    • Shelly 5 years ago

      Because it’s an interesting story. Your response is a bit too dramatic

      • Aimee 5 years ago

        Interesting story? Wow, Shelly. Your absence of punctuation explains a lot.

  3. Sheila Benson 5 years ago

    Put a fence around the area leading into your yard, keeping the area to the pond & waterways open, to keep pets & others safe !! As well as keeping the turtle undisturbed.

  4. Rosemaryflower 5 years ago

    this is a lovely story. There are some HUGE turtles in Loudoun County. I have seen quite a few over the years. Once when driving on Demott Drive, there was a very large one crossing the road. Another woman and I stopped our cars to observe the beast. We were too skeeered to pick it up and bring it to it’s desired destination, so we waited for a brave assistant to drive by. Finally after several cars drove by (not interested) a young fella stopped and picked the turtle up. It’s legs were as big as my wrists. The turtle hissed and flailed it’s legs when it was picked up, but the young brave assistant continued with his task. This turtle I encountered was easily 20 pounds.

  5. Anonymous 4 years ago


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