Friday, September 6, 2013

Season of the Massasauga Rattler!

Photo of an eastern massasauga rattlesnake by Jonathan Schechter

 Autumn is just around the corner and it's a perfect time to hike a trail.
Michigan's only venomous reptile, the massasauga rattlesnake also likes our sun-soaked
 trails in the  waning days of summer and early autumn.  
What better place to soak up late day heat before slithering about on their ways!
  And if you leave the rattlers alone they will grant you
 the same safe passage. NOTE:  They are a protected species.
A herpetologist and most naturalists and some cases  wilderness medicine trained
 physician came make a positive ID of  a rattler by subtle physical characteristics.
 If you can not identify  "keeled mid-dorsal scales" and "undivided subcaudal  
scales" and do not know the significance of the 'pit' of the rattler, just leave the snake along.    

  • I took the photo above two years ago on a popular Oakland County hike-bike trail.
  • Almost all rattler bites are on the dominant hand of the offending human!  
  • Much of Oakland County is ratter habitat.        


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