How To Get Rid Of Snapping Turtles In A Pond

Video best bait for snapping turtles

So, you have some snapping turtles in your pond and want to get rid of them, huh? Well, you’ve come to the right palace!

In this article we will be exploring why you should get the snapping turtles out of your pond, and what the best and most humane way to do this is.

Keep on reading to find out why these snappy little guys need to go, how you can minimize the risk to yourself, and also to them…

Why would you want to get rid of snapping turtles?

Snapping turtles, as cute as they may look, are actually pretty dangerous! They can enter your garden pond or water feature easily from any neighboring stretches of water. If you live near a river or lake, for example, they could easily make their way to your nice, quiet pond.

The reason they are so dangerous is because of the type of animal they are. They are carnivorous animals which means that they will not think twice about snapping up your ornamental fish.

They have also been known to eat baby ducks, geese, and other waterbirds. So, needless to say, it is best to get rid of them! However, this can be easier said than done, especially since they also carry a huge risk towards humans too.

The bite of a snapping turtle is extremely painful and can cause really serious damage. They are also known to carry the infection known as salmonella, putting you at risk of infection from their bite.

With this in mind, the way you approach these creatures needs to be well planned and executed carefully. Follow our tips to find out how to get rid of snapping turtles.

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Check the Regulations in the Local Area

Before you do anything, it is very important that you check the rules and regulations for the area in which you reside. The reason for this is because many local authorities have certain ways of dealing with animals that are a danger.

The authorities will help you in the best ways to trap them, as well as letting you know where you can release them back into the wild. Some locations, for example, may be off-limits due to the carnivorous nature of these animals.

As well as this, some animals may be protected by certain authorities. Your local authority will be able to advise you on how to deal with the snapping turtles, and may even come out to deal with them for you!

Choose Your Humane Trap

Notice the word ‘humane’! This is very important! We have already stated this but we think it is important to remind you again that whilst they are undesirable characters in your pond, they are just animals trying to do the best they can to survive.

The traps that you get to get rid of these turtles should be live traps, meaning that they can be caught with no harm done to them. Usually, you can choose from either floating or non floating traps.

Either is fine but just ensure the non floating trap is positioned on solid ground so the snapping turtle has access to oxygen or else they will drown. Choosing either of these traps will make it far easier to transport them to safety and will minimize the risk of you getting hurt, too.

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Choose Your Bait for the Trap

Choosing the right type of bait for your snapping turtle trap is essential. You will need to lure them into the trap, and so you need to choose something that will be attractive to them. Remember, snapping turtles are carnivores!

So, for this reason, you should seek out bait that will appeal to them such as meat or fish. They prefer meat with very strong scents! This allows them to track the bait better. This also means that even if the bait gets wet, the scent will remain strong and will be able to be easily identified by your snapping turtles.

With this in mind, we recommend that you should choose strong-smelling fish, beef, liver, and other animal organs such as kidney. These all have strong scents that not even water could lessen.

Set Up Your Snapping Turtle Trap

Now that you have chosen your trap and bait for the trap, you can set it all up together. It is super important that any bait you use is placed deep enough inside the trap to allow the snapping turtle to get fully inside it. Place the trap in a shallow area, as this is where the turtle is most likely to hunt for food.

If your trap is non floating then you will need to place it so that part of it is out of the water. As such, it will need to be on a bank or partly on the shore.

If you do not do this then the turtle will be trapped without oxygen and will drown.


This should be avoided at all costs since the snapping turtle does not need to be killed in order to get rid of it. It is very important that you deal with your snapping turtle infestation humanely.

Relocate Your Snapping Turtle

When you have finally got your snapping turtles inside the trap, now is the time to relocate them.

As annoying as they are, and as detrimental as they can be to your pond, they are just innocent animals. They are acting on their natural instincts and deserve to be able to live a good life.

You should take them to a safe water source, approved by the local authorities to relocate them. Alternatively, you could ask for advice from the local authorities or even ask them to do this part for you.

You should take extreme care when handling a snapping turtle since their bite is dangerous, and can cause lots of pain and damage. They also have very sharp claws which can easily tear through your skin. Always wear gloves to protect yourself around them.

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>