A video posted on Snapchat of a man using an ax to kill a snapping turtle in Holland prompted an investigation by Department of Environmental Conservation officers, the state agency reported Wednesday.
The video was posted in early July and then shared on Facebook, DEC officials said.
An officer tracked down the man in the video in Colden. The man told the officer that he killed the turtle "because he was concerned about the safety of his younger sister and dog," officials said.
The DEC officer noted that the man had a valid hunting license but that the season for taking snapping turtles was closed and that the method of killing it was illegal. Snapping turtles, the only kind of turtle that is legal to hunt in New York, can only be hunted using a firearm or bow, according to the DEC website. Open season for snapping turtles is between July 15 and Sept. 30.
The man, whose name was not released, was issued summonses for taking small game during the closed season and taking small game by means not specified. He faces fines of up to $500, not including court charges.