Alligator Snapping Turtle Bites Through Pineapple

Pineapple time!

The alligator snapping turtle is one of the heaviest turtles in the world, and it looks like a remnant of the Mesozoic Era.

Image: LA Dawson/Austin Reptile Service

Named for its resemblance to alligators, this turtle is not your average pond dweller. Like other snapping turtles, it has jaws that can crunch through fish, fruit, broom handles, and even, bone.

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These jaws are powerful and worthy of respect. You DO NOT want to put your hand anywhere near their mouth!

Alligator_Snapping_Turtle - Photo by Garry Tucker, USFWS
Alligator snapping turtle jaws. Photo by Garry Tucker, USFWS.

But just how how powerful are these jaws?

Well, they can deliver a bite at 1,550 ± 180 N; 348 ± 40 lbf (158 ± 18 kgf ), which may seem like much, but relative to body size, it’s about on par with the bite force of humans.

However, the primary difference between human jaws and alligator snapper jaws is obvious: humans don’t have a humongous pair of incisors that can bite clean through a pineapple.


Their jaws are scary effective. Yet, despite beliefs that they can bite off fingers, only the biggest snappers are capable of that.

That said, we don’t recommend sticking your fingers into an alligator snapper’s mouth to find out. Adults might be able to sever fingers, but even baby alligator snappers can deliver a painful bite!

Click here to learn 8 more amazing facts about this amazing animal!

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