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View Full Version : Interesting Rattlesnake Photos I Took Yesterday At Work


suedv
06-21-2007, 02:27 PM
I participated in part of an Eastern Massasagua Rattlesnake research project yesterday with several scientists that I work with. These pictures were taken at our Paw Paw Prairie Fen Preserve. We were out looking for rattlesnakes so they could be tagged and then have an antennae place in them so our science staff could study their behavior and speed of movement so we can keep them safe during prescribed burns.

In case you wondered a fen is a type of wetland that accumulates peat deposits. Fens are less acidic than bogs, deriving most of their water from groundwater rich in calcium and magnesium. The groundwater in the fen perks up through limestone that was deposited by glaciers.

This is a picture of the Paw Paw Prairie Fen.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:30 PM
The rattlesnakes hide down deep in the sedge and are difficult to see because the blend in so well. You can walk right over one and easily miss it. In this picture we've spotted one and now a couple of the guys are in the process of picking it up.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:31 PM
James has the snake.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:33 PM
Matt holds the snake for a little better view.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:34 PM
Another view of the snake. By the way that is my hand that I'm not holding the camera with.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:37 PM
The snake is placed in a pillow case and carried out of the fen for processing.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:38 PM
First the snake is weighed in the pillow case.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:43 PM
Next the snake is measured. It is placed in a box with a plexiglass lid that is pressed on the snake. A line is drawn on the plexiglass to measure later. This is the best way to measure it because by this time the snake is pretty uptight and nobody want to be bitten by a venomous snake.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-21-2007, 02:44 PM
I dont see the snake. Is this one of those "where's waldo" things where I gotta find the snake in the picture???

OH! I see the other pics now....... sorry...

Cool Pics Sue!!!!

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:46 PM
After measurement the snake is scanned to see if it has been tagged before. This one has not so the process continues.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:48 PM
The snake is carefully picked up and its head is placed in a tube so it can't bite while the rest of the field work is done.

Monte
06-21-2007, 02:50 PM
Neat pics sue... Glad it is you...... not me.....

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:50 PM
In this picture James is holding the snake tightly in the tube while Matt determines the gender. This snake is a female.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:51 PM
Now Matt is cleaning the spot where the chip will be placed in the snake for further identification.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:52 PM
This is what holds the data for further identification.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:54 PM
Inserting the identification tag

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:55 PM
A picture of the rattles.

suedv
06-21-2007, 02:59 PM
Now the snake is ready to go to the vet for the antena to be place. The identification tag will stay in the snake permanently, but the antena will be removed in a couple of years after the research project is done. Two snakes were processed yesterday. Matt and James are happy to have another snake processed.

The snakes are released back into the fen by the next day.

chudson
06-21-2007, 03:00 PM
Real interesting Sue, knew we had rattlers in IL. did'nt know they went further north. Great pictures, be careful!!!

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-21-2007, 03:00 PM
Very interesting Sue!!! Not my style of work. I would hit the snake with a shovel and say, OK, now we can track it. its gonna be right here, just put a push pin on the map. It aint going nowhere. Easier to track that way.8p ;)

uawaterskier
06-21-2007, 03:03 PM
you can play with the snakes all you want...im out

Jkelly
06-21-2007, 03:10 PM
Very interesting Sue!!! Not my style of work. I would hit the snake with a shovel and say, OK, now we can track it. its gonna be right here, just put a push pin on the map. It aint going nowhere. Easier to track that way.8p ;)


I would not get that close. I prefer the shoot gun method.

suedv
06-21-2007, 03:12 PM
Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes are very shy snakes unless they are really threatened. They are classified as a species of special concern. We work to protect them so they don't get into the federally endangered category.

They are small compared to other rattlesnakes. They only get to be about 30" long. Their fangs aren't as big as the larger ones. I'm out in that fen quite a bit for work. I wear heavy rubber boots that go to my knees and I don't worry about the snakes.

I'm actually more concerned about the poison ivy, poison sumac, and tics. When we go there to work we us a lot of bug spray and then check eachother for ticks before we go home. We take tecnew with us so we can clean up if we touch poison ivy.

03 35th Anniversary
06-21-2007, 03:19 PM
Hey Sue...What is the average length of a rattler in Michigan? Down here in Texas most of them that we kill around the barns are 3'-4' long.

shepherd
06-21-2007, 03:22 PM
Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnakes are very shy snakes unless they are really threatened. They are classified as a species of special concern. We work to protect them so they don't get into the federally endangered category.


So, I guess the shovel or shotgun methods of dealing with them wouldn't be too cool. :cool:

I noticed the guys hunting them weren't wearing protective boots!

east tx skier
06-21-2007, 03:23 PM
you can play with the snakes all you want...im out

Seconded, thirded, and four-ten'd.

suedv
06-21-2007, 03:30 PM
So, I guess the shovel or shotgun methods of dealing with them wouldn't be too cool. :cool:

I noticed the guys hunting them weren't wearing protective boots!

You're right, the shovel and shotgun = bad.


About the boots, I think I'm older and wiser. ;)

SkiDog
06-21-2007, 03:40 PM
I'm building a hunting cabin here in So. Ga., and I want to have a BIG eastern diamondback mounted in the striking position! I've seen one at a place called 'Cabin Bluff' and when I looked up and saw it, it scared the Sh-- out of me, it looked sooooo real! We have got some really big ones around this part of the woods!

TX.X-30 fan
06-21-2007, 03:41 PM
Those guys will be very busy doing that down here. :D


Personalities
The World’s Largest Rattlesnake Round Up
Only in Texas would rounding up 120 tons of western diamondback rattlesnakes sound fun. Photographer Geoff Badner heads to Sweetwater for the beheadings.



SOUTHERN FRIED RATTLESNAKE

1 egg
Salt
Garlic salt
Oil for frying
Accent
1/2 to 3/4 c. milk
Pepper
Flour
Rattlesnake

Skin rattlesnake. Clean and wash meat. Cut in 4 inch lengths. Beat egg and milk. Mix salt, pepper, garlic salt, Accent and flour. Preheat deep fat fryer with cooking oil. Dip snake into egg mixture and then in flour mixture and place it in hot oil. Cook until golden brown. Don't knock it until you've tried it.


30" :confused: Well I guess everything is bigger in Texas. :D


23418

23419


Found that last one curled up in my sock drawer in my jock strap. :D

fintek9
06-21-2007, 04:01 PM
Sue, thanks we've wondered what the name of those snakes were!
got them around the gourdneck state game area here in portage,
Now i'm a tuff guy hunter... but those will make me jump and run in
place...screem like a little girl...then look around to see if anyone saw
me..:o......koodos girl

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-21-2007, 04:04 PM
Those guys will be very busy doing that down here. :D


Personalities
The World’s Largest Rattlesnake Round Up
Only in Texas would rounding up 120 tons of western diamondback rattlesnakes sound fun. Photographer Geoff Badner heads to Sweetwater for the beheadings.



SOUTHERN FRIED RATTLESNAKE

1 egg
Salt
Garlic salt
Oil for frying
Accent
1/2 to 3/4 c. milk
Pepper
Flour
Rattlesnake

Skin rattlesnake. Clean and wash meat. Cut in 4 inch lengths. Beat egg and milk. Mix salt, pepper, garlic salt, Accent and flour. Preheat deep fat fryer with cooking oil. Dip snake into egg mixture and then in flour mixture and place it in hot oil. Cook until golden brown. Don't knock it until you've tried it.


30" :confused: Well I guess everything is bigger in Texas. :D


23418

23419


Found that last one curled up in my sock drawer in my jock strap. :D
Does that make it a "trouser snake" then???

TX.X-30 fan
06-21-2007, 04:12 PM
Does that make it a "trouser snake" then???



Well it certainly wouldn't be a polska kilbasa. 8p 8p

ProTour X9
06-21-2007, 04:17 PM
This is what holds the data for further identification.


I have that watch!!8p

Wow I didn't know Sue was a scientist:cool:

Sue I asked a friend whos last name was "dv" he says theres millions of them in GR.

jclose8
06-21-2007, 04:41 PM
VERY cool report. I hope you appreciate how cool your job is.

Is that a vintage Rick Leach football jersey in those pictures? He played QB for the Wolverines, then went on to play first base for the Tigers. Good athlete. Very old jersey.

Willski
06-21-2007, 08:11 PM
That is really cool Sue. I wouldn't typically kill a snake, but my method of "tracking" would be, "He's back there about 50 yards, no, a 100,150,200,300....

tex
06-21-2007, 08:32 PM
The only good rattlesnake is a dead rattlesnake! Sorry PETA!

betsy&david Harrison
06-21-2007, 11:15 PM
Ok, I bravely looked through once with white knuckles and my heart pounding...never again!!

JEREMY79
06-21-2007, 11:19 PM
dont reckon I would much care if they got burned!!!!

peason
06-22-2007, 01:27 AM
Very cool Sue. Thanks for sharing and teaching me something new!

Ric
06-22-2007, 12:33 PM
my skin is crawling after that!

Why is it that I can go out and sit under a tree in the dark and wait for a damn turkey to strut into the meadow for some lovin, but lookin at that snake freaks me out? I need a drink

Ric
06-22-2007, 12:34 PM
#7.... was that griese's number in college?

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-22-2007, 12:40 PM
my skin is crawling after that!

Why is it that I can go out and sit under a tree in the dark and wait for a damn turkey to strut into the meadow for some lovin, but lookin at that snake freaks me out? I need a drink
Because dummy, snakes slither and bite, turkeys strut and dont bite. simple. thats why. :rolleyes:

Ric
06-22-2007, 01:01 PM
Because dummy, snakes slither and bite, turkeys strut and dont bite. simple. thats why. :rolleyes: You are a genius umpire. Don't let anyone tell you differently

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-22-2007, 01:09 PM
:You are a genius umpire. Don't let anyone tell you differently
Thank you, thank you, I am just here to help. :D :D

endl
06-22-2007, 01:10 PM
I participated in part of an Eastern Massasagua Rattlesnake research project yesterday with several scientists that I work with. These pictures were taken at our Paw Paw Prairie Fen Preserve. We were out looking for rattlesnakes so they could be tagged and then have an antennae place in them so our science staff could study their behavior and speed of movement so we can keep them safe during prescribed burns.

In case you wondered a fen is a type of wetland that accumulates peat deposits. Fens are less acidic than bogs, deriving most of their water from groundwater rich in calcium and magnesium. The groundwater in the fen perks up through limestone that was deposited by glaciers.

This is a picture of the Paw Paw Prairie Fen.
Down here in Arkansas we just call them swamps!

Ric
06-22-2007, 01:14 PM
:
Thank you, thank you, I am just here to help. :D :D note to self. take ump spring turkey hunting in TX. drop him off at "the pit" stand.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-22-2007, 01:19 PM
note to self. take ump spring turkey hunting in TX. drop him off at "the pit" stand.
Something tells me I am not going to be the hunter, but the hunted.:o

fintek9
06-22-2007, 01:23 PM
something just called the "pit stand" makes me say..OH H**L NO....

Upper Michigan Prostar190
06-22-2007, 01:53 PM
I just think Ric wants to get me out in the woods alone.....:o :eek3: or maybe Racheal does.... I dont know

Maristar210
06-22-2007, 01:56 PM
note to self. take ump spring turkey hunting in TX. drop him off at "the pit" stand.

Make sure to give him a box of set screws as a parting gift :rolleyes: