Terrapins Bite

Common Terrapin IllnessesI just have come to know about the painful bite from your pet terrapin Tyson.

I hope you are fully recovered by now. I was quite concerned because it could have been worse.

It is said that once a terrapin bites you, it doesn’t let go till it thunders!

I can visualize vividly about your mis-adventure which lead you to this painful bite from your newly adopted terrapin. Well, your heroic terrapin has justified its name.

But it is not your over-aggressive pet but the experienced (supposed to be) pet-shop owner who made me extremely annoyed! How could he sell it to a green-horn customer like you without explaining about their typical characteristics?

No, I will never hold the terrapin responsible for this disastrous episode. Who knows, maybe an extreme stress pushed it to nibble on your three beautifully manicured fingers!

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You must have experienced an excruciating pain but thankfully terrapins are not venomous like some other reptiles. Some painkillers and antibiotic ointments should heal your wound.

You should have learnt some dos and don’ts before planning on buying the terrapin. Now let me share a few things which I was told by a terrapin breeder during my research-project on conservation of endangered terrapins.

Terrapins are carnivorous reptiles and some of them are considered as powerful predators. They appeared on this earth about 180 million years ago and the fossils of those prehistoric terrapins prove their size to be bigger than the new-age ones.

They even possessed small knob-like teeth inside their jaws which disappeared during the evolution.

The present day terrapins do not possess any teeth but their horny, sharply serrated and powerful jaws can bite and tear up their food easily.

Normally the smaller terrapins feed on living fish, mollusks, worms etc while the huge alligator snapping turtles (the largest variety of terrapins found in North America) do not hesitate to savor on other terrapins or even snakes and baby crocodiles too using their beak-like strong jaws! Oops!

You should have gone for a hatchling rather than an adult terrapin which are difficult to tame and capable of giving strong terrapin bites.

The bite of some terrapins is the second strongest among all the animals of the world and we should thank God that Tyson didn’t sever your fingers off. Tell this to your children too.

Next time hold your terrapin from the side of the shell firmly but gently and carefully to avoid another bite.