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#mississippiwildlife

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I hear it is #MacrochelysMonday, so here is a photo of an #alligatorsnappingturtle from a South Mississippi River. This species, as I'm sure you've heard or read, is the largest freshwater turtle in North America, reaching weights up to 150lbs or more, however they all start from humble beginnings. This guy is probably a few years old and will hopefully be a behemoth some day. #Mississippiwildlife #snappingturtle #alligatorsnapper

Such a peculiar and interesting turtle. My friend Luke made a miraculous dive from the canoe during some map turtle surveys to snag this female smooth softshell (Apalone mutica) we saw passing underneath the boat. This species isn't as widely distributed or even as visible in waterways as their more abundant congeners, the spiny softshell. They're more habitat specific than spiny's, and they're tied to generally medium to large lotic (i.e., flowing) systems, though this lady was found in a medium sized creek. These guys are a super fast turtle, and I've seen them dive into the sand like a knife through butter. Labmate @gabbieberry got tissue and measurements from this pretty lady as part of her Master's thesis. Be sure to give her a follow if you're interested to see more pictures of Mississippi turtles! #Mississippiwildlife #softshellturtle #turtles

I guess you could say spring is in the air 🍃🌻🌸 #boxturtle #Terrapene #bowchickawowwow #Mississippiwildlife

During recent map turtle surveys, we spotted this very handsome, but very stuck, eastern box turtle in NE Mississippi. This guy somehow found himself wedged between two rocks on the back, and he more or less flagged us down for a hand. 😂 #boxturtle #Mississippiwildlife #turtlesofinstagram

Just some of the usual suspects. Who wants to name them? Starting from left to right... Hint: two are endemics, ID the one and you've got the other. Go! #Mississippiwildlife #turtles #turtlesofinstagram #turtlepower #turtlediversity

It's hatchling season here in South Mississippi! I hatched these little nuggets as part of a paternity study of stripe-necked musk turtles (#Sternotherus minor peltifer). After fattening then up a little they'll be released back to their native stream. In the meantime my heart will just keep melting. 💘 #babyturtle #babyturtles #Mississippiwildlife

I saw this Pascagoula map turtle catching some dappled sunlight on a small snag yesterday. This species is endemic to the Pascagoula drainage, and it is known for its extreme sexual dimorphism where females develop a massive head for crushing mollusk prey. This male, however, is a bit more normally proportioned. #Mississippiwildlife #mapturtle #Graptemys

A first for me: I caught this young alligator snapping turtle basking over the weekend. While not unheard of, the #alligatorsnappingturtle typically lies motionless amongst deadwood in the water or buried in the substrate, so to see one out basking was pretty neat. I caught this guy and brought him back to a labmate who is currently studying the status of this species in the state (Mississippi) since the species is up for review for listing by USFWS in 2018. #Mississippiwildlife #Macrochelys #alligatorsnapper

A couple of last year's Easter eggs. I saw these small alligator snapping turtles in a small river in S. Mississippi over the weekend while looking for musk turtles. Surprisingly little is known about the status of alligator snapping turtles in Mississippi, but a graduate student at the University of Southern Mississippi is going to evaluate their status in the state. Based on the number of #Macrochelys I see doing my own work, I'd say some of our populations are doing really well. It's also encouraging to see they're reproducing and that we've found turtles at all age classes. #alligatorsnappingturtle #babyturtle #Mississippiwildlife

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Leucistic Ruby-throated Hummingbird #hummingbird #mississippiwildlife

It's hatchling season here in South Mississippi! I hatched these little nuggets as part of a paternity study of stripe-necked musk turtles (#Sternotherus minor peltifer). After fattening then up a little they'll be released back to their native stream. In the meantime my heart will just keep melting. 💘 #babyturtle #babyturtles #Mississippiwildlife

Many of the Gulf Coast rivers in the Southeast US harbor these little gems. Each major river system from the Apalachicola to the Pearl holds its own species of megacephalic map turtle. Because the genus is highly aquatic and seldom ventures far from water, they were isolated in these rivers for enough time to speciate in each. The Pascagoula is home to the Pascagoula map turtle (#Graptemys gibbonsi), named after one of my former herpetology professors at UGA. This young turtle was caught by a buddy of mine, @wishardmatt, and released after a few photos. #turtles #mapturtle #Mississippiwildlife

Beginning of September, @gabbieberry and I caught the most feisty Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys temminckii; 27 pounds) ever. It managed to escape where I pinned it at the back of the boat, snuck up on me, and bit me right above the ankle. Luckily it hit my shin head-on and only the lower beak scraped my leg, otherwise we probably would have been on the way to the hospital. Needless to say, I don't think I've jumped that quickly backwards in my entire life!
#alligatorsnappingturtle #bite #lucky #turtle #mississippiwildlife #fieldwork

I had a blast showing my buddies Kyle and Matt (@wishardmatt) around some choice areas of South Mississippi. One of many highlights of the trip was catching this young alligator snapping turtle (#Macrochelys temminckii). This turtle will one day potentially reach a weight of 150+ pounds, making it the largest freshwater turtle in North America. They'll eat almost anything edible - fish, mussels, clams, other turtles, as well as vegetation, persimmons, muscadines, acorns, you name it! Genetic and morphometric data on this turtle were collected for @luke_pearson2 who is studying this species in Mississippi. Attached, too, is a release video. They're quicker than you think, huh? #alligatorsnapper #snappingturtle #Mississippiwildlife #turtlesrule #kowabunga

We are coming up on 24 hours left in our fundraiser for @centralmswildliferehab ❤️ Please click the link in my bio or theirs to order! My entire commission goes to the fundraiser. We are almost at $300 donated and our goal is $500 😱 We can do it but we need your help! Like, repost, tag your friends! #wildlife #wildliferehab #wildliferescue #mississippiwildlife #whitetail #whitetaildeer #poshwithcarissa

We are coming up on 24 hours left in our fundraiser for @centralmswildliferehab ❤️ Please click the link in my bio or theirs to order! My entire commission goes to the fundraiser. We are almost at $300 donated and our goal is $500 😱 We can do it but we need your help! Like, repost, tag your friends! #wildlife #wildliferehab #wildliferescue #mississippiwildlife #whitetail #whitetaildeer #poshwithcarissa

There are just four days left to help us raise money for @centralmswildliferehab ❤️ These beavers call CMWR home for now! Last week when I went they were splashing around in a kiddie pool but yesterday they were cuddled up sleeping 😍 Click the link in my bio to order! ALL my commission goes to the fundraiser. #wildlife #mississippiwildlife #wildliferescue #wildliferefuge #wildliferehab #rescuerehabrelease #mississippi #wildlifephotography #poshwithcarissa #fundraiser

Did I mention earlier how freaking cute these guys are?!?! I just want to snuggle all the animals home with me 😍 Be sure and order in our fundraiser to support these animals! #wildlife #wildliferescue #wildliferehab #rescuerehabrelease #mississippiwildlife #wildlifelover #wildlifephoto #raccoon #raccoons #raccoonlove #poshwithcarissa @centralmswildliferehab

These guys are cute and funny and quite mischievous 🤣 However, they come with lots of costs! @centralmswildliferehab depends on donations in order to operate so we need your help! Visit www.poshwithcarissa.com and I'll donate my entire commission to CMWR. Fundraiser ends September 12th 😱 #wildlife #wildliferescue #wildliferehab #rescuerehabrelease #mississippiwildlife #raccoon #raccoons #raccoonlove #poshwithcarissa

Now as excited as these two look: they're not. But I was! I caught these two stripe-necked musk turtles (Sternotherus minor peltifer) during a recent sampling trip for my dissertation work. Despite their diminutive size, these are both reproductively mature turtles. The species rarely exceeds more than 4 inches or so, and I think they're an under appreciated species of turtle in the Southeast. Most people think of mud and musk turtles as drab, but have a look at these two. Simply gorgeous. #Alabamawildlife #Mississippiwildlife #(they were right on the border) #muskturtle #turtles Thanks @bhamaudubon for funding for this study!

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