SOME rather exotic wildlife has been seen in the murky waters of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal.
Leonard Cook, 75, of Hill Top, Slaithwaite, is convinced he saw a snapper turtle - common in Canadian fresh waters - when he was fishing in the canal on the Appleyard stretch, near Wellhouse, Golcar.
He said: "I had heard a few rather big splashes and thought there must have been some large fish about.
"Then I spotted what certainly looked like a snapper turtle coming out of the water.
"It just sat there on the side for a while, but when I told a few of the people who were about it did not seem to like the commotion and it plopped back in the water. It was about 12in long and 6in wide," said Mr Cook.
But senior animal care technician at Huddersfield Technical College Maggie Davies is not convinced there are snappers loose in the canal.
She thinks it may have been a large terrapin released in to the waterway.
She said: "We have had lots of reports from the police and the RSPCA that there are terrapins in the canals in this area.
"When the Teenage Ninja Turtles were a popular cartoon many people bought terrapins. But they soon released they did not make very good pets for children and dumped them in the canal.
"Unfortunately they cause havoc, attacking fish and even small ducks," she added.
"I think the most likely explanation is that it was a red-eared terrapin, rather than a snapper."