Living With Venomous Reptiles

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by LDMGOLD » Tue Oct 12, 2010 6:17 am

The snake finally swallowed the whole Jack Rabbit. It is amazing what they can swallow.

Tom K.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by LDMGOLD » Sat Oct 23, 2010 10:06 am

Terry,

Here is a photo of the last Tiger rattlesnake I have seen in this area. This snake was about two and half feet long. He was a beautiful specimen. We caught him, examined him,measured him, weight him and then release him. The photo was taken along the Apache Trail at about 2040, on May 5, 1986, just east of Tortilla Flat. I took this photo with my Minolta ST101 35mm. I scanned the slide and digitized it. I didn't get the best results, but you can tell it is a Tiger rattler. I have been photographing these animals for more than forty-five years and recording information about them. It is just a hobby, but I enjoy doing it and maybe someday the information will be valuable to somebody. No, I don't plan on writing a book about snakes. There are many excellent book out there on pit vipers and other snakes.

Take care all,

Tom K.


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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by LDMGOLD » Sun Nov 28, 2010 7:44 pm

I hoping to hear more reported sightings of Crotalus tigris (Tiger Rattlesnake). I have found them extremely rare during the past decade. Maybe it is just the habitat I have searched in. Ten years ago I often spotted them during the summer months after a monsoon rain along the Apache Trail between Canyon Lake and Tortilla Trail Head. I sighted many Crotalus atrox and of course quite a few Crotalus S. along the Kelvin-Florence Highway in recent years. I refrain from publishing on the internet the exact habitat area that is somewhat populated with rattlesnakes. There are to many ignorant collectors out that destroy the habitat and population of these beautiful animals. I can't stand these ignorant people who skin rattlesnakes and make hat bands out of them. They are to me symbolic of the destructive forces within our society that destroys wildlife habitat. I must get off my soap box at this point or I will be accused of being a Sierra Club member. (?)

Tom K.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by reptilist » Sun Nov 28, 2010 8:03 pm

I've been talking to several herpers this year who have seen Tiger Rattlesnakes, so I don't think they are diminishing any more so than other species.... Considering the rocky terrain they tend to prefer, I might even come to the conclusion that they will have a little more time from the developer's bull dozers than the flat lander species.

I think people out here still have a "manifest destiny" seed in their brains. They want to subjugate the wild country and make trophies for their walls....and their hats. If only the big picture were more obvious.... Can it be more obvious? Under my breath I call them "monkey men", because they do not evolve nor change their opinions even when presented with facts and conditions.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by LDMGOLD » Sun Nov 28, 2010 9:19 pm

I'll buy that Terry. I pleased to hear you are hearing reports about Tiger Rattlers being around still. I haven't seen any along the Apache Trail in over ten years now. Of course I am not on the "Trail" everyday either.

You take care,

Tom K.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by LDMGOLD » Mon Dec 27, 2010 4:29 pm

I would think the greatest deterrent for the snake population in our area is lost of habitat and food sources. Also the impact of snake collectors and those who kill reptiles thinking they are dangerous or useless in our environment. I have always argued on behalf of wildlife. As the Salt River Valley fringes continue to develop there is a continuous lost of corridor access for wildlife into such areas as South Mountain Park, North Mountain Park and on and on. The ecological stage is constantly changing and being destroyed by urban development. Many new residents wants everything destroyed that is not passive human. Many people do not believe global warming is a reality. We will not survive our own self-destructive mode. I wrote a thesis on this subject forty years ago titled the "Yellow Sky". It was a futuristic piece involving a space odyssey from sometime in the future describing our planet's slow demise. The paper is about thirty or forty pages in length. Every time I read it I wake up again and see reality coming our way for our children and grand children. Perhaps somebody will wake up in the next fifty or seventy-five years. Who knows we may eradicate life on Earth with nuclear warfare one day and only the cockroach will survive! I suppose I am considered an environmental radical like Edward Abby. Actually I am not quite that radical. Good luck Earth in the future. Terry, often ignorance is bliss when it comes to "Monkey" men who collect trophies to hang on their walls or hats. Their argument has always been the wildlife must be managed and hunting is a method of management. Hunting is a politician's method of management. Enough said..........for me.

Take care desert friends.....Tom K.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by Sandman » Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:46 pm

Ok, I have to admit I have the skin from a Pacific Diamondback on an old hat. It was curled up under the front step and my wife almost stepped on it. A quick flick of the shovel put an end to it and I bar b qued it for lunch! Sorry amigos.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by reptilist » Mon Jan 10, 2011 8:00 am

I think we have all done something similar at one time or other, Sandman.
I personally handle those situations much differently now than I used to.
Having the proper tools and mindset to safely and humanely relocate the animal is integral, and for those who lack what is needed, I make myself available (locally) for that purpose.
I actually don't see why everyone who encounters snakes on the porch doesn't keep a tongs and a bucket as household tools.
http://www.tongs.com
I do not eat snakes though, they taste yucky.

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by LDMGOLD » Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:48 pm

Hi Terry:

I just took a look at Tongs.com. The prices are a bit high compared to when I bought my tongs. I believe mine 25" tongs cost $29.95 around 1979 or 1980. I still have them and they have never failed me. Mine has aircraft cable inside of them. Interesting website. I have a lot of very similar snake bite photographs I received from different sources over the years. I have always been partial to "Snake Venom Poisoning" as a reference to venomous reptiles. I believe the book is written by Dr. Russell Findley. Of course it is probably outdated a little today. I believe I purchased it in 1980.

Have good New Year.....

Tom K..

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Re: Living With Venomous Reptiles

Post by reptilist » Mon Jan 10, 2011 7:56 pm

Like everything else, the prices went up when we weren't looking!
My tongs are from the Whitco mfg. company in Texas. They are the best made imo.

http://www.whitneysnaketongs.com/

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