UNDATED -- This is the peak time of year for turtles crossing streets and roads in Minnesota.

Late May and June is also when many are hit by vehicles.

D-N-R research biologist Krista Larson says some turtles are moving between bodies of water, however:

The majority of turtles that people are seeing right now are females that are crossing land to find a good spot to nest, especially painted turtles and snapping turtles can migrate pretty long distances to find places where they want to dig a nest and lay their eggs.

Larson says there is no need to assist a turtle on a rural, gravel road. You can help one cross a road with higher traffic volume by pulling over, turning on your hazards, and gently moving it in the same direction it was heading.

We always make recommendations that you try to handle the turtle as least as possible. They can get stressed out. If it's a reproductive female, they need the water they have inside them to lay their eggs. So it's really important to try to keep that turtle low to the ground and scoot it across the road as quickly and gently as possible.

She says you can use a shovel, broom, or something else from your car when handling a snapping turtle.

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This story is courtesy of the Minnesota News Network.

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