Snake snuff jocks hit the airwaves?

August 21, 2008

rattlesnake-0808-full180.jpgHey Blog Guy, sometimes you offer helpful guidelines for people who want to know if they may have chosen the wrong career. Keep them coming!  

Sure. Here’s one litmus test. If you find yourself with a tube of glue in one hand and a live rattlesnake in the other, it may be time to put rabid bats in your guidance counselor’s car.

The reason this comes to mind is, I saw photos of this guy gluing radio transmitters to rattlesnakes in hopes of learning why so many of them get run over on highways.

Apparently the thinking is – and I do see some flaws here – that given a chance to reach a drive-time radio audience, snakes will broadcast stuff like, “Well, here comes a Porsche 911 going about 110 mph, so I’m going to slither on across Route 27 and ttthhhhhhhpppppp!!!!!”

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Adam Martinson, from the University of Calgary, glues a radio transmitter onto the back of a prairie rattlesnake in Dinosaur Provincial Park, Alberta, on August 7, 2008. Martinson has come to study why snakes slither onto – and too frequently die on – the asphalt blacktop of the region’s roads. REUTERS/ Todd Korol

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Does gluing something to a snake affect its ability to shed its skin?

Posted by Randall Banks | Report as abusive

Snakes need heat, (they are not capable of generating internal heat,) the asphalt is a heat storage device during the day. At night the asphalt and ground cools and snakes slither into theirs dens with each other lowering their metabolic rate to sleep until morning. When the sun arrives and heats the ground and asphalt.
In conclusion they are also looking for food. We happen to build a road through their migratory search for food, warmth and isolation.

Posted by Sherman McFarland | Report as abusive

What imbecile funded this? Someone who sells snakebite antivenom??!

Posted by Dee T | Report as abusive

You know, if you know how to handle snakes, you’re not likely to get bitten at all. I’m sure this guy is a professional. (I could be wrong though! :) )

I’m sure they know that snakes are cold-blooded and are seeking the warmth, so perhaps they’re trying to see where they are most often so that they can do something to keep them from going to highway… whether that’s seeding an area farther away that the snake still goes to with food sources or building something to keep heat for them I really have no idea–I’m not a snake-ologist (or whatever they’re called)

Beautiful snake though. <3

Posted by Melissa A. | Report as abusive

Dear Sherman,
Reptiles do not sleep.

Dear Deet,
Antivenin, not “antivenom.”

Dear Melissa,
I believe snake keepers have an astronomical bite rate as compared to the general population.

Your friend decidedly NOT in herpetology,

p.s. You gotta love Dexter’s new look.

Posted by Shawn Hendricks | Report as abusive

Gerome found himself so intrigued with the phenomenon that he stripped naked and squirmed into the middle of the road to see if he could discover for himself what the deceased snakes found so attractive. Ironically, his doctoral sponsor, Professor Tread Marks, was driving the Toyota Landcruiser that brought Gerome’s life to an abrupt and embarassing end.

Posted by Shawn Hendricks | Report as abusive

Blacktop might be warmer in summer, but in winter? At 4 AM, twelve hours after the sun’s gone down? When it’s twenty below?

That was the weirdest accident I’ve ever been in. I don’t think the RCMP officer believed that we swerved to miss a rattlesnake.

Posted by Charlene | Report as abusive

Snakes are kool.

Posted by Krew2do | Report as abusive

Are they clogging up the tread on tires causing them to lose traction? No? So… who cares why strive to be road kill?

Posted by Expat47 | Report as abusive

When I think, hear of or see a snake I immediately think of Samuel L. Jackson saying, “I’m tired of these M-F’ing snakes on this M-F’ing plane!”

Glad to see Shawn Hendricks back making comments and corrections. You funny! You make me raugh!

Posted by dayshiftbob | Report as abusive

Oh Shawn!! I have missed your wit, wisdom and insight so much. I am really glad that you are back!!

Posted by Diane | Report as abusive

Ok, Shawn, First, reptiles do sleep, they just do it with their eyes open, they also hibernate in the winter to keep from dying as they do not have the ability to regulate their body temps.

second, anti-venom and anti-venin are BOTH correct.

Third, snake keepers actually have a lower bite rate than most people who have dogs. All animals have the ability to turn on people as they have a tendency to revert to their natural instincts to protect themselves. Just like owning a dog or cat, about 90% of snake bites from wranglers and keepers are just from stupid or rookie mistakes such as trying to handle the snake after feeding it before washing hands or trying to handle it while it is shedding. You should really do some research before posting “factual” comments

Posted by adamnason | Report as abusive