melissa

Off with a bang!

We arrived at Muleshoe Ranch at ~13:45 to meet with the manager and finalize plans for our new project. We are hoping to find 10 rattlesnakes in the next couple weeks: two western diamond-backed (Crotalus atrox), two black-tailed (C. molossus), and six Arizona blacks (C. cerberus). We got the grand tour of the ranch, including …

Off with a bang! Read More »

Ménage à trois (part 2)

(if you haven’t already, see part 1) When we left our 3 gophersnakes, Bluto had just interrupted courtship between Popeye and Olive Oyl and was biting Popeye repeatedly along his body. Popeye released his bite-grip on Olive Oyl and she fled so fast that we were unable to follow. Bluto continued biting Popeye, making him …

Ménage à trois (part 2) Read More »

Desert Dining

On a humid Sonoran Desert evening we met up with Roger Repp and Gordon Schuett at their study site along with some old friends from near and far. Wandering the washes, we find a juvenile desert rodent stumbling out of a hackberry bush into the dry stream channel. It turns at our approach and manages …

Desert Dining Read More »

Pretty in Pink

28 April:  Molly basks briefly before leaving the security of the den to fulfill what is on every rattlesnake’s mind: the first meal of the year. It’s been over seven months since they’ve last had a chance to eat, so they’re probably quite hungry. Molly comes out first and coils on the left. The snake …

Pretty in Pink Read More »

She’s back: Alice!

One of our favorite snakes of 2010 has been spotted at the den!  Alice was coiled next to a log a short distance away from the den the afternoon of 25 April: Alice. 25 April 2011 13:40 And later heading away to her hunting grounds for this year: Alice. 25 April 2011 16:13 Because she gave …

She’s back: Alice! Read More »

Zona

*This story illustrates how we identify individual snakes and how important these aggregation sites are to the rattlesnakes. 29 May 2010. One of the first snakes marked at this site was Zona, a female less than a year old when we first encountered her. Zona was sitting on a downed log a few meters from …

Zona Read More »

SuizoReport: Black Velvet

SuizoReport: Black Velvet: “A new religion that will bring you to your knees Black Velvet if you please……….. Howdy Herpers, On 16 April, John Slone escorted …”

Bandshell

Halfway between Tucson and Phoenix, a crumbling granite hillside gives way to a cactus-studded alluvial plain. Small, sandy washes break up this landscape and facilitate the growth of desert trees. Here, the western diamondbacked rattlesnake flourishes during times of plenty and, in leaner times, retreats to refuges to idle until conditions improve. In February of …

Bandshell Read More »