East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Dedicated exclusively to field herping.

Moderator: Scott Waters

Post Reply
cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 16th, 2015, 7:38 pm

2014 was a year of lifers for me! Not so much with local animals (with a couple of exceptions) but with two short trips to Arizona I was bound to find herps I've never laid eyes on before. We'll start with a few things from the beginning of the year before my first AZ trip.

A couple of warm days in January brought the aquatic snakes out in full force at the local swamp.
Image
Image
Image
Image

In early February I took a trip to Arizona for some national sales meetings. Probably not the best time of year for snakes, but I wanted to take a couple extra days to enjoy the desert in all its beauty. I did find some herps along the way!

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

The one snake I did find on this trip was a very welcomed lifer!

Sonoran Desert Sidewinder
Image
Image
Image

Back home in GA I took a couple of trips to South GA to look for my elusive Eastern Indigo Snake before the Winter ended. It would'nt be until much later in 2014 that I would finally be successful, but many other reptiles and amphibians were out and about.

Image
Image
Image

Always exciting to see this pattern!
Image
Image
Image

Spring brought much flipping of tin!

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

I was able to get out in the field with some good company this year. One such outing was with Ian. He came upon this monster Eastern Mud Snake in the blue!

Image
Image

The month of May is for road cruising!

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

June through the Summer months are limited to mostly nocturnal road cruising. But the Pigs are plentiful!

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

My family took a week vacation with some close friends to northern Virginia. Not much time for herping but I stumbled upon a few.

Image
Image
Image

Then the trip I had been eagerly anticipating all year long...SE Arizona! On Labor Day weekend I joined dozens of fellow herpers, some of whom I know well, to the Chiracaua Mountains for the NAFHA Meetings. With the exception of the Longnose Snake, just about every other snake turned out to be a lifer (yes, even the atrox). I had the privilege of my non-herping brother, Chris join me for the outdoor experience and we spent most of the trip with my herping friend, Justin. Here is most of what we found including my goal of the trip, the Green Rat Snake.

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

The roads were literally crawing with these feisty Mojave Rattlesnakes!
Image
Image
Image

Nice pink atrox
Image

I have now found all three species of Pituophis in the US with this Sonoran Gopher Snake!
Image
Image

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

Do you like irony? A week after finding this lifer Texas Horned Lizard here in NM I found myself finding this very same species on the beach in the South Carolina Lowcountry.
Image

And then the find of the trip...Green Rat Snake! I have wanted to find one of these since I began this hobby many years ago. I was finally in their minute geographical U.S. range. My good friend, Tim Warfuel, told me a road to check out and within 30 minutes we came upon this beauty stretched out across the road. I'm quite proud of finding this amazing animal on my first attempt.
Image
Image

Image
Image

A quick hike to my favorite Queen Snake streams.
Image

Then, back home in GA My favorite time of year...Fall herping! Things started to pick up quickly in the sandhills.

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

Just when the year usually begins to wind down for herp activity, I decided to take a short drive to South Georgia to take one more shot at my elusive Indigo Snake. This time it would pay off!! Two female Indigos withing 30 minutes of each other basking just outside their tortoise burrows. What a thrill! Now to find a massive male.
Image
Image
Image
Image

Georgia is one of those few places that, with the right weather conditions, you can find snakes all year round. But when the air is too cool you can always find the amphibians when the rains prevail. I have not always been much of a caudata enthusiast but this winter I've decided to see what all the fuss is about.
Image
Image
Image

I think this is what they call a Ambystoma "grand slam"? in one week? Is that a big deal?
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

One last trip to my Indigo locale with some good non-herping freinds turned up some non-indigo snakes on New Year's Day 2015. It looks like this will be another great year for herping in East Central Georgia! I hope you've enjoyed the look back at 2014 with me!
Image
Image
Image
Image

User avatar
Josh Holbrook
Posts: 2195
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 7:11 am
Location: Western North Carolina
Contact:

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by Josh Holbrook » January 16th, 2015, 8:13 pm

Great stuff! We'll be tearing it up in 2015 (already have been!)

I don't know how easy or hard it is, but an Ambystoma Grand Slam is awesome in my books.

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 16th, 2015, 8:26 pm

You would know, Josh! You had one recently in one day! Mine was in a week. I enjoyed getting out with you in recent weeks. Let's get that Rainbow in 2015.

Cary

User avatar
Andrew G
Posts: 278
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 12:53 pm
Location: South-Central Kansas

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by Andrew G » January 17th, 2015, 3:53 am

Fantastic post. I love the mud snakes, pine snakes and indigos! Looks like you find a lot of timbers in your area as well.

davhug1
Posts: 125
Joined: November 30th, 2012, 1:12 pm
Location: lackawanna county

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by davhug1 » January 17th, 2015, 5:48 am

Good stuff, carey

User avatar
Mike VanValen
Posts: 2074
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 3:41 pm
Location: Connecticut
Contact:

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by Mike VanValen » January 17th, 2015, 10:33 am

Great variety. I love those eastern kings and the canebrakes. How close were you to the pronghorn?

User avatar
walk-about
Posts: 567
Joined: June 14th, 2010, 11:04 am
Location: 'God's Country' aka western KY
Contact:

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by walk-about » January 17th, 2015, 3:56 pm

Cary - What an awesome post! I remember quite vividly my first trip to the Sonoran Desert 1989. I will never forget. Made several more trips after that. It left a mark. Love your pics. What is the story on that Georgia Pine Snake under the log? Looks like it was an area recently burned?? Is that how you find them there in GA - in the open like that?

Dave

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 17th, 2015, 4:26 pm

Looks like you find a lot of timbers in your area as well.
Yes, Andrew, Timbers, or Canebrakes, are one of the more common rattlesnake here in out part of GA/SC. I usually find them without much effort crossing the roads at different times of the year.

Thanks, Dave! It was a banner year for me. I was able to get to some great new places in 2014.
How close were you to the pronghorn?
Mike, we were about 100 ft from the 3 doe and about 100 yards from the buck. They didn't seem too concerned that we were there. It was on a huge ranch so probably used to humans to some degree.
Is that how you find them there in GA - in the open like that?
LOL, Dave, I wish Pines were as easy as this one to find. This one made a beeline to its stump hole about 10 feet away after I got some photos. Usually we have to track their movements on sandy roads and hope to see them on the crawl a hundred feet into the forest. It sure helps to see the color contrast on a recent prescribed burn. Thanks for the compliments!

HerpMan ATL
Posts: 84
Joined: August 30th, 2014, 11:36 am

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by HerpMan ATL » January 17th, 2015, 6:27 pm

Wow. Thats a banner year for sure and a great start to 2015. Awesome photos too.

User avatar
Daniel D Dye
Posts: 1223
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 3:56 pm
Location: New River (Brooker), Florida
Contact:

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by Daniel D Dye » January 17th, 2015, 9:10 pm

Wow...Sensor overload!! Awesome post, Cary.

It was great to finally meet you in person. Hope to see you in 2015.

DDD

User avatar
Andrew G
Posts: 278
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 12:53 pm
Location: South-Central Kansas

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by Andrew G » January 18th, 2015, 11:25 am

cherper wrote:
Looks like you find a lot of timbers in your area as well.
Yes, Andrew, Timbers, or Canebrakes, are one of the more common rattlesnake here in out part of GA/SC. I usually find them without much effort crossing the roads at different times of the year.
Do you herp much in areas where there are EDBs too (I noticed that I didn't see any pics of them in your post)? I was wondering if this is due to relative scarcity of the species or if you just weren't in their range a lot, as it seems you posted pretty much every other species from that part of the world! :thumb:

sjohn
Posts: 19
Joined: December 10th, 2013, 7:36 am
Location: NC

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by sjohn » January 19th, 2015, 11:37 am

That was a great post....as a fan of Pits the Pine under the log looked very interesting.

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 19th, 2015, 4:18 pm

Andrew, That was a good observation. I live about an hour from the Northernmost range of diamondbacks. They eluded me this year despite spending some time in locales where I've found them previously. I'll admit I didn't pursue them in 2014 as diligently as other years, in fact, I didn't find my lifer diamondback until 2012. I'll throw in a photo here of one found last year a little over an hour from my home.

Cary

Image

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 19th, 2015, 4:25 pm

Thanks, herpmanATL! I assume ATL means you are in Atlanta?

Daniel, It was a pleasure getting to meet you also finally in 2014! Done deal on getting out together sometime in 2015. I'd really like to get down your way sometime. I hear legendary stories about "the Farm". Nice EDB this past weekend, by the way!

Cary

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 19th, 2015, 4:29 pm

That was a great post....as a fan of Pits the Pine under the log looked very interesting.
Thanks, sjohn! Probably my favorite snake in the Southeast. Quite a thrill to see that pattern while walking a recent burn in late winter.

Cary

User avatar
chrish
Posts: 3295
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 10:14 pm
Location: San Antonio, TX
Contact:

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by chrish » January 19th, 2015, 5:51 pm

Great post. Looks like a banner year. That second indigo is certainly a stunner.
My favorite might be the Southern Hog. Don't see enough of those on the forum.

User avatar
LouB747
Posts: 1183
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 7:50 am
Location: Huntington Beach, CA

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by LouB747 » January 19th, 2015, 5:55 pm

Awesome post. Like the little patchnose.

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 20th, 2015, 7:16 pm

Thanks, Guys!

chrish, I just sent you a PM.

User avatar
Berkeley Boone
Posts: 878
Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:02 am

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by Berkeley Boone » January 21st, 2015, 2:54 am

Wow! Cary that was superb! That little silver corn pictured among the pigs was a looker- not to mention all your pigs too! That canebrake that was hanging out with the skink was gorgeous as well.

You killed it last year! I'm looking forward to getting out with you this year.
--Berkeley

MCHerper
Posts: 443
Joined: September 22nd, 2012, 5:13 pm

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by MCHerper » January 21st, 2015, 5:32 am

Incredible! Great stuff, and I hope that this year is as good or even better for you! Thanks for sharing!

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 21st, 2015, 7:19 pm

Thanks, Berkeley! I'll look forward to getting out in the field with you this year. I still need to get you that cholla if you still need it. :lol: That silver corn was a yearling and I thought it must belong in South Florida somewhere. Also, you know the tin site where I found those two "buddies" hanging out. Let me know when you want to get out in March or April to see if they are still there.

Cary

cherper
Posts: 173
Joined: June 7th, 2010, 9:14 am
Location: CSRA Georgia

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by cherper » January 21st, 2015, 7:20 pm

Thanks MCherper, I have a work trip coming up in South Texas next month so I hope to find a few lifers right off the bat. Good luck to you this year as well!

Cary

User avatar
kevin h
Posts: 98
Joined: January 18th, 2015, 3:04 pm

Re: East Central GA 2014 EOY with a couple AZ trips

Post by kevin h » January 22nd, 2015, 5:56 pm

I believe these are some of the best photos of herps I have ever seen. I'll probably never have enough money, but just out of curiosity what type of camera do you use.

Post Reply