Apr. 16, 2017

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Speaking of rattlesnakes, here's our local representative.  No, that's not a political comment, though it well could be.  I learned yesterday that the massasauga is now a federally endangered species.  Hmm, maybe that political comment could have led in an appropriate direction.  Anyway, we have a healthy population of these at Ives Fen Preserve.  We didn't see any while there yesterday, but we did see one of their roommates, a four-inch long crawfish.  Massasaugas hibernate in crawfish holes.  Every year lately the massasaugas are studied.  They're caught, measured, have radio trackers implanted, and are returned to the catch location.  The last time I was involved, 18 were found.  Tom and I talked about them yesterday, and I bet he wonders if the radio trackers can be used to keep us away from them.  This amazing animal is not universally liked.  Particularly on the adjacent golf course.  I wonder how long it will take for snakes to evolve an instinct to not crawl onto open places where everybody has clubs.  No wonder they're endangered.