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Thread: Not just another pretty face ....

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    RL7836's Avatar
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    Not just another pretty face ....

    On Sunday, my wife & I headed out to a section of the Appalachian Trail that has some great woods & fantastic overlooks (one w/ ~300 degree vista). On the hike, we came across this beauty just as he/she was about to cross the trail. I'm not sure who was more startled ...


    Sadly, this magnificent species is quite uncommon in NJ & still suffers from human interaction - a quote from the NJ DEP "The timber rattlesnake may arguably be among the state's most endangered species. They occur in relatively small numbers in the few remaining remote and rugged areas of the state. They are often the targets of wanton killing and suffer continued persecution from illegal collecting."

    Sadly, I didn't realize until later that I could have also taken a video or at least captured the rattling in a sound bite (it rattled continuously while in the defensive posture)- still not thinking beyond the old 'gotta take a pic' mentality. Pics were snagged with my iPod Touch so resolution quite low, exposure poor, etc.

    Decided to leave - sort of. If you look closely, you'll notice the head is turned around and beginning to come back to the trail. I'm guessing that it was ~4 feet long.


    Rattle


    View overlooking the Delaware River from one of the fields


    Overall, it was a beautiful day for a hike. In addition to the gorgeous Timber Rattlesnake (Crotalus horridus), we also saw a Black Racer (Coluber constrictor), Red-bellied snake (approx 7 inches long) (Storeria occipitomaculata) & a young black bear as well as numerous birds, bugs, variety of trees, etc - a great day to be out of the house. We also talked with several thru-hikers on the trail - interesting people.
    Last edited by RL7836; 06-18-2012 at 09:37 AM.
    All the best,
    Ron
    You must do the thing you think you cannot do. --- Eleanor Roosevelt

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    mass's Avatar
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    note to self: NEVER visit the Appalachian Trail!!
    -is Ophidiophobiac.

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    villosaholic Heli's Avatar
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    Wow very nice Ron! That last picture reminds me of a hike I do in upstate New York, the end of the trail leads to a cliff over looking the Hudson valley.

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=mass;1084224]note to self: NEVER visit the Appalachian Trail!! [QUOTE]

    My thoughts exactly. That and an extra pair of clean underwear is a must!

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    I've got a magic window! elgecko's Avatar
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    Nice pic, beautiful view.


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    BANNED
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    Wow, that's the most beautiful rattlesnake I've ever seen. The colors are much nicer than the Western Diamondbacks that were back in Texas.


    edit: Apparently Timber Rattlesnakes can be found in Houston. I never saw one, though.

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    i dont do pots. amphirion's Avatar
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    beautiful snake! where's an SLR when you need one?
    " You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." -Inigo Montoya
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    RL7836's Avatar
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    I received a PM asking me to point out the head of the snake in the 'leaving' pic.

    The arrow is pointed directly at the head of the snake, which is now turned back toward the tail.

    Quote Originally Posted by mass View Post
    note to self: NEVER visit the Appalachian Trail!!
    -is Ophidiophobiac.
    Wow - would never have figured that someone who enjoys the company of so many T's to have a fear of snakes. The AT tends to meander through many mountains, ridges, etc - very good territory for TRs. Another hiker saw a smaller one about a mile from this one on the trail.

    Quote Originally Posted by jimscott View Post
    My thoughts exactly. That and an extra pair of clean underwear is a must!
    If I had taken one more step before seeing / hearing it - this likely would have been required. As it was, I quickly ensured that my wife stayed behind me and struggled to get my iPod out of my pocket.

    Quote Originally Posted by mato View Post
    Wow, that's the most beautiful rattlesnake I've ever seen. The colors are much nicer than the Western Diamondbacks that were back in Texas.
    Yes, the diamondbacks don't have interesting colors but make up for that with their size. The TRs have a few color morphs and apparently Canebrakes are also considered the same species.

    Quote Originally Posted by amphirion View Post
    beautiful snake! where's an SLR when you need one?
    Really!! Although I have a bigger issue - I've yet to ever upgrade my film SLR (which hasn't been used in years) to a DSLR. Since Olympus made all of my equpment obsolete, they're unlikely to ever see another dime from me. Next purchase is probably a Canon (probably T3i - but need to do my homework).
    All the best,
    Ron
    You must do the thing you think you cannot do. --- Eleanor Roosevelt

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