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Hey,Rob. I caught a fair sized one that went 35lbs,I rotted the skin /flesh off the skull in a 1lb folgers can ,just barely fit in it . I got the skull all clean an shiny as a european mount now. looks kinda neat.
 

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My wife hooked into a 30+ that I had to remove the hook from it's foot. Can't go lettin no snapper take a good hook. ha ha. I let him bite on the rim of one of our nets then popped the hook and let em drop in the water. Too bad he wasn't in season at the time cause we did not catch any in the traps this season.:angry:
 

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Years ago I seen a picture and newspaper article in a baitshop by Dover, TN of a 120 pound turtle. Honest, that things neck was as big as mine. lol
 

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i caught one with my wife that was a monster, but we didn't have any way to weigh and let it go. caught a 90# alligator snapper in east texas by hand. gator snappers have way bigger heads than commons, and this one had a huge head. i'd like to have an alligator snapper's skull as a mount, but they are protected in texas.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Every year Corps of Engineers shuts water flow off below Longbranch State Park (east fork) and water in the creek is down by about 2.5 ft. In culverts under highways used to live a huge alligator snapper...his/her wake covered a third of tunnel! I just happened to be down by creek right after they shut water off. So I thought heck ill snag some carp for fun. First thing I snagged I couldnt budge with 60 lb test . I stuck my rod up to reel in the ground and walked to other side of creek. when i did my line moved about 3 feet opposite direction. I thought hmm thats odd. Then i went back to other side it moved opposite way again. Hmm x2 . Then I quietly snuck over to other side and picked up a steel fence post that was laying there. I crept out into the water about up to my knees which got me within a few feet of my line. I thrust the fence post in the water and hit a shell. I started tapping around making bigger and bigger circles . When I was within a foot of me i finally realized the big one from in the tunnel musta come out when they shut water down. I backed out of there in a hurry! Finally broke my line trying to move the turtle. Never did see it but id guess by other turtles ive caught it had to be a monster.
 

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i have a pic of me holding two about 25 and 18. they look as if there going to bite my nipples off. ill post it tomorrow after i dig it out. biggest one ive ever caught and cleaned was about 30lbs. the one i did the article on cooking/cleaning was 22.
 

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Back in the 70's was walking around an abandoned overgrown lake when my
trigger happy buddy Ed shooting bullfrogs shot at a head the size of a football that popped up in the water, about 50 yards out, with a 22 S&W Model 17 revolver. We thought he missed...

It went under and we forgot about it. One of my cop friend neighbors took his kid there to fish for perch a few days later and said he smelled a dead body.

He said there was a dead snapping turtle "The size of a VW bug covered with a million flies".....

We told the guy at the local gun store and he starting hunting them at the lake. Had some huge snapper shells on the wall a few months later but nothing like the VW.

There are 7 different meats in a turtle and they all taste ....like turtle!!!:crazy:
 

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I catch a few snappers every year, can anyone give me a good and easy way to clean one . We have a wild game feed every year and a lot of us like turtle, the only thing is that the olboys that used to to do most of the cleaning are no longer with us.
Any help would be great
 

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Floyd
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Using pliers or ? , hold him tight by the mouth with neck stretched out. Cut off his head.

Hang him upside down to bleed out for about 30 minutes.

Put him on his back, cut claws and feet off.

Cut skin around shell top and bottom, cut and pull skin away from shell on the front legs until skin is removed.

On the soft shell belly outside edge of shell, cut through soft shell contact points and remove.

Remove guts and innards.

Remove front legs, may need to twist to break the joint.

Cut and peel skin from back legs and neck.

Remove back legs and neck, again twisting to break joints.

Leave meat on bone, but try to remove as much fat as possible.

Wash with cold water, repeat until clean.

Freeze submerged in water.

I used to use hacksaw blade to cut parts of shell

Now i use a drimmel it is quick and easy :0a26:
 

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Floyd
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Snapping turtles can be prepared in many ways, much the same as squirrels or rabbits. The best results are obtained by boiling the meat until it can be easily removed from the bone. Try frying the meat with bacon in a skillet or adding it to a stew or gumbo.

Meat from one medium-sized turtle, cubed
1 large onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
4-5 potatoes, cubed
2 14.5 oz. cans of peeled tomatoes or 8-10 fresh tomatoes, coarse chopped
1 11 oz. can of corn or N package frozen corn.

Brown turtle meat with onions and garlic in a hot skillet with a little cooking oil, (get the skillet real hot and drop the pieces of meat into the hot oil.) When the meat is browned on all sides drain oil and transfer meat, onions and garlic to a Dutch oven. Add potatoes, tomatoes and corn.
Season the mixture with salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste. Add water to just cover ingredients and cook covered at a high simmer for 45 minutes or until the potatoes are thoroughly cooked.
At this point the stew is ready to eat :002::002::002::002:
 

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Thanks a lot Floyd I'm lokking forward to the first one this year, the wife and I must have caught at least 10 turtle last year but did'nt know how to prepare. Great fishin to ya and thanks again !!!:big_smile:
 

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After I bleed them out I take a small come along or tie down strap.I hook it on one side of the shell then wrap it around a tree and fasten him to the tree good and tight belly side out.You have him up at eye level where you can work on him.take the bottom plate off and peel the meat out .having him up in a vertical position gravity will help you peel the meat out...just kinda roll's out as you cut it away from the shell and leg's ...hope this help's ..as with anything you will get better with practice:wink:
 

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I catch a few snappers every year, can anyone give me a good and easy way to clean one . We have a wild game feed every year and a lot of us like turtle, the only thing is that the olboys that used to to do most of the cleaning are no longer with us.
Any help would be great
Not that I don't think Floyd's recipe doesn't sound good, but there is an awesome set of detailed instructions with pictures here in the library. I would put a link to it, but I don't know how, sorry. Maybe one of the "older" members could put it up for you. It is worth looking into.
 

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The biggest one i have ever got was 38# and had a whole muskrat in it that didnt even look hurt.Must of swallowed it whole.We get ours from creeks by hand and have done it for years passed down from grandfather to dad and uncles to me,i let the ball drop as my kids wont do it, but then i have four daughters and only one son. Can clean a turtle in my prime in 10 min. for a twenty pound turtle.Took me 20 last year so i guess i am slipping. We would go from Iowa to southern IL. over to In. and get a trunk full or station wagon back full,no truck back then just the fishing car.Sold it to taverns when times got a little tight.
 
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