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CathyBogart
05-07-2003, 02:59 AM
Rattlesnake roundups started not long after Europeans started settling the country. The practice involved people going out and catching as many rattlers as they could, which were then mass slaughtered.

Rattlesnakes often take over abandoned burrows dug by endangered Gopher Tortoises, and these "wranglers" will pour gasoline down the burrows and light it ti flush out the animals. It's not always rattlers that come out...some of the burrows are still occupied by tortoises, or the now VERY endangered Eastern Indigo snake, whose diet consists mainly of rattlesnakes. These snakes are either left to die or gathered right along with the rattlers.

Once caught they are brought back to the main site to be measured. Prizes are usually awarded for the longest rattler caught, most rattlers caught, etc. Inevitably, someone is bitten... Later, some of the snakes are slaughtered and eaten, some are sold in mass quantities to labs for testing and such, and the rest are often just tossed into one area they cannot escape from and burned.

Based on field observations from several herpers on kingsnake.com, the Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake population is less than ten percent of what it was a decade ago. Ten years ago it was common to find three juvenile rattlers to every five adults, now it's more like one juvenile ot every adult. Why? Probably because the adults are getting so spread out that they can't find one another during breeding season.

Some rattlesnake roundups have taken a different approach, using less than twenty individual snakes, and giving educational presentations on how to avoid rattlesnakes, snakebite protocol, etc. The snakes aren't harmed during these events. (Sants Fe, Florida is an example of one that has evolved up from neanderthal slaughter)

Several other good points were brought up at kingsnake....Why is it that PETA and the HSUS will go crazy trying to save a handful of cats in poor conditions, but not bat an eye at hundreds of snakes being tortured every year? It hardly seems fair that they are trying to ban us herpers from keeping captive bred snakes in good conditions but they ignore the suffering of all the animals "rounded up" every year. You KNOW that if someone was rounding up stray dogs and cats, eating them, and selling the rest to labs or burning them, PETS and the HS would throw a fit.

Also, look at what these farmers are doing to their crops. The Eastern Diamondback is a keystone predator, keeping the rodent population under control. These same people who are mass murdering innocent snakes are going to be whining about the rats eating their crops in the coming season. Is this hypocrytical or is this just me?

I am going to try and find out what companies are sponsoring these events and write to them. I'll post the info when I get it.

RICHARD
05-07-2003, 12:30 PM
Originally posted by WolfChan
these "wranglers" will pour gasoline down the burrows and light it ti flush out the animals. It's not always rattlers that come out...some of the burrows are still occupied by tortoises, or the now VERY endangered Eastern Indigo snake,



these morons do not know the difference between a snake
and tortise hole?????? i know that the creatures will
take over a burrow that's abandoned, but to indiscriminately
burn animal lairs????
:mad:

yorkster
05-07-2003, 11:15 PM
Originally posted by WolfChan


Also, look at what these farmers are doing to their crops. The Eastern Diamondback is a keystone predator, keeping the rodent population under control. These same people who are mass murdering innocent snakes are going to be whining about the rats eating their crops in the coming season. Is this hypocrytical or is this just me?



I agree- it is hypocritical.
It makes me think of that time in history when (in Europe) CATS were thought to be 'evil'. They were caught and killed.
And what happened? The Black Plague!

Let us know what you find out.