Timber Tracking


My buddy Greg was involved with a long-term radio tracking study of Timber Rattlesnakes in Indiana.  When he called me one day in early September and asked if I wanted to come over and tag along, I was immediately interested.  One of my goals for that herping season was to see more Crotalus horridus in the field, and to learn more about them.  After finding a handful of Iowa's beautiful Timbers earlier that year, I was anxious to see some Indiana horridus and continue my education.  I was also very interested in learning more about radio tracking.

After work I packed up my gear and headed east, and as night fell I pulled into a campground near the study site to spend the night.  As I sat by my small fire, I wondered what the next day would bring.  I had seen Timbers in Illinois, Missouri, Kansas and Iowa, and in each place they looked somewhat different, and they occupied different types of woodland habitat.  Most of my sightings involved snakes either emerging from or retreating to their winter dens, putting myself in the right place and at the right time to increase chances of a sighting.  Tomorrow I would be observing them on their home ground, on just another day in the season of the serpent.

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