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alligator snapping turtle

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noun
a large American snapping turtle, Macroclemys temmincki, having three prominent ridges on its shell and a wormlike process on the floor of the mouth used to attract prey.

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Also called alligator snapper.

Origin of alligator snapping turtle

An Americanism dating back to 1790–1800
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

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