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 Post subject: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 20th, 2012, 3:27 pm 
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Location: Northern New England
Hey folks, there has been a bit of excitement in Claxton lately. The Evans County Wildlife Club, which runs the roundup, as agreed to halt the collection of snakes from the wild so long at GA DNR is able to provide 40-50 Diamondbacks for use at the festival. These snakes would not be handled in demonstrations and would be returned to DNR at the end of the event for use in future years. This is not a complete fix but I feel it is a huge step in the right direction. The end to collecting snakes from the wild and killing them after the festival, as it has bee ndone there for 45 years, is not a legal agreement and the Wildlife Club could very well decide to go back to the old ways in the future. At the moment they are receiving some positive feedback from wildlife enthusiasts but some flak from locals. At this point in time it would be extremely helpful to send emails to some of the folk in charge commending them on their decision to not collect snakes and kill them. Positive support now will help reassure them that they have made the right decision and possibly save the lives of HUNDREDS of wild Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes in the decade to come.

Below are correspondences I have received.

Quote:
Claxton, Georgia has recently agreed to no longer collect rattlesnakes for their annual roundup as long as Georgia DNR provides 40-50 rattlesnakes to exhibit. The event is March 9-10, which doesn’t give them much time to amass snakes. If you or someone you know has several rattlesnakes that they would be willing to loan for this event, please let me know and I’ll inform John. It looks like DNR staff will have to come to Florida to pick up the snakes, and your snakes will be returned to you afterwards. The snakes will be displayed outside in wire screen cages and will not be part of any handling demonstrations. For future roundups, this roundup of captive Florida snakes will not be needed.


And an email from John Jensen, who spearheaded this negotiation:

Quote:
The Evans County Wildlife Club, the group that organizes the Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup, decided last week to discontinue the annual rounding-up of wild rattlesnakes, opting to turn the event into a wildlife-friendly festival (note the new name in subject line). Instead of annually harvesting up to 300+ wild snakes that are ultimately slaughtered, Claxton will be provided (by DNR) with a captive source of 40-50 rattlesnakes each year to maintain the "wow" effect, but these animals will only be displayed. These snakes and their captive-produced offspring will be used year after year.

Bruce Purcell, the president of the Evans County Wildlife Club really stuck out his neck on this change and is already getting a good amount of flak about it from locals and those that profited on the wild snakes. Below this email is the address for the club. If you support this effort, I urge you to please write letters to Bruce and the club, praising them for this positive change. Further, I also strongly encourage you to come to the event (Mar. 10-11) to show support. If this new format is not successful, they will certainly go back to the way it was, which we don't want. Please forward or pass along this request for writing letters of support and attending the event to anyone else you know that would be supportive of this change.


Messages of support and encouragement can be sent to the Claxton Chamber of Commerce, which still has members skeptical of the decision, at [email protected]

It would also be helpful to contact the Evans County Wildlife Club to voice support of their decision

Evans County Wildlife Club
PO Box 292
Claxton, Georgia 30417
(912) 739-3820

I'm sorry but I do not, at the moment, have an email address for the wildlife club.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 20th, 2012, 8:12 pm 

Joined: July 2nd, 2010, 5:48 pm
Posts: 607
Location: AZ.
please keep us informed on this...it is a curious situation, apparently a "wildlife" club uses this as a fund raiser? Since they agree to not collect them, some of them agree it is not a a sound practice, yet they demand the government supply them with snakes in exchange for not taking themselves? That is a large collectin of high strung and uncommon rattlesnakes. ..why do they need so many? If they expect the DNR- government to provide the snakes, that is sort of like extortion..., I wonder what kind of precedent it will set? I am all about stopping exploitation of non-sustainable wildlife harvests, but it appears they want to have a spectacle of snake exploitation but not harvest them themselves...is this a solution to the problem? Maybe they could "rent" them from one of the tourist oriented/venom collecting businesses? Maybe this is some herpetoculturalists golden opportunity...providing diamondbacks for temporary spectacles...? From my vantage here on the west coast, this seems an odd situation, maybe I am missing some important point/aspect? Amazing how restrictive Geogia is in tems of keeping native herps, yet they apparently allow rattlesnake round-ups...? Hard to believe. BTW, is there solid data to show a decline in numbers or increase in effort and and decline in average size of snakes harvested at these round-ups? This is a fascinating conundrum...hard to understand given the way other wildlife is treated, harvested etc. Does the DNR argue or have evidence it is sustainable? I am willing to write a letter as you request, but you could you explain or refer me to information on why and how this all goes down? Otherwise I am at a loss for words, it is hard for me to make sense of it, and I am wondering if I don't know the facts or details? (It seems the harvesting of diamondbacks would result in "take" of Gopherus and Drymarchon...wouldn't that alone eliminate this "festival"?)


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 20th, 2012, 8:18 pm 

Joined: July 2nd, 2010, 5:48 pm
Posts: 607
Location: AZ.
Gyri, I did a few searches and I now have a better idea...15, 000 visitors...2 days "The answer is $, now what was the question?" may apply....


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 20th, 2012, 8:27 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:18 pm
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Location: Northern New England
Ha, yeah, the roundup is a major source of income for the community around the event. Much of the local economy depends on the roundup for the time being so for as long as the collection and slaughter of venomous snakes is legal there will be tremendous local pressure to allow the roundups. The concerns you raise are valid however for the moment I simply do not see any way in which the claxton folk would consent to actually ending the roundup, or festival as it is now called, entirely. There will be a bit of a scramble to get 40-50 snakes for this upcoming March but I think by next year more long-term arrangements can be made. A friend of mine in the area who keeps many captive snakes has already expressed an interest in acquiring up to 10 EDBs to keep specifically for the purpose of lending them to the roundup annually. If it means 10 less snakes are killed in the wild year after year that enough is reward enough to him for caring for the snakes. In 10 years that's 100 wild snakes saved. It only takes a handful of people with that mindset to get up to the 50 requested for the event. No, from a conservation and DNR perspective it is not a perfect solution but it is a huge step in the right direction.

edit: for those of you who don't know, all native non-venomous snakes are protected in Georgia but there are no regulations at all for venomous species, largely as a result of public pressure for keeping the roundups. You can do whatever you want to rattlesnakes-- collect, keep, kill, breed, whatever.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 21st, 2012, 6:03 am 

Joined: October 21st, 2011, 2:30 am
Posts: 126
Gyri wrote:
Ha, yeah, the roundup is a major source of income for the community around the event. Much of the local economy depends on the roundup for the time being so for as long as the collection and slaughter of venomous snakes is legal there will be tremendous local pressure to allow the roundups. The concerns you raise are valid however for the moment I simply do not see any way in which the claxton folk would consent to actually ending the roundup, or festival as it is now called, entirely. There will be a bit of a scramble to get 40-50 snakes for this upcoming March but I think by next year more long-term arrangements can be made. A friend of mine in the area who keeps many captive snakes has already expressed an interest in acquiring up to 10 EDBs to keep specifically for the purpose of lending them to the roundup annually. If it means 10 less snakes are killed in the wild year after year that enough is reward enough to him for caring for the snakes. In 10 years that's 100 wild snakes saved. It only takes a handful of people with that mindset to get up to the 50 requested for the event. No, from a conservation and DNR perspective it is not a perfect solution but it is a huge step in the right direction.

edit: for those of you who don't know, all native non-venomous snakes are protected in Georgia but there are no regulations at all for venomous species, largely as a result of public pressure for keeping the roundups. You can do whatever you want to rattlesnakes-- collect, keep, kill, breed, whatever.


I think this is wonderful news and i agree with you we don't need to look a gift horse errrr make that gift snake in the mouth that's the problem with this sort of thing, when someone or some group does eventually relent or just sees the wisdom in not harvesting wild animals on a large scale and tries to compromise on this sort of issue the nature nazis just demand more and continue to whine and complain just as loudly as when they simply killed them all. We should just be happy they are not killing rattlesnakes anymore instead of bitching about how this is still unethical, immoral or whatever, and dare i say as you suggested send a few emails of support for this decision along to them. Hopefully more roundups will follow the example of the one in Pennsylvania and this one.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 21st, 2012, 9:05 am 
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Location: Ventura, CA
This would certainly appear to be a positive step and perhaps represents a shift toward a more positive relationship with wildlife in general.

squinn wrote:
when someone or some group does eventually relent or just sees the wisdom in not harvesting wild animals on a large scale and tries to compromise on this sort of issue the nature nazis just demand more and continue to whine and complain just as loudly as when they simply killed them all.


It's likely that to many readers the use of politically charged pejoratives undermines the credibility of the writer by revealing hard-line predispositions. ...and in regards to credibility of the above statement, do you have any case histories to support your assertion?

Now, as with any cause, there are unreasonable supporters with extreme views who perhaps are even in it for the wrong reasons. But is it possible that you're not fully aware of the rampant environmental destruction that has and will continue to occur and that whatever compromises have been made to appease environmental concerns serve only to slow that rate of destruction? Whiny or valiant, those who value nature in an undisturbed state are ultimately the losers. If they whine and complain it's for the loss of that they love, our very heritage as human animals. Such lament is a natural human reaction. And those whiners and complainers include John Muir, Rachel Carson, Margory Stoneman Douglas, Diane Fossey, Jane Goodall, Carl Pope, Michael Cousteau, Yvon Chouinard, Rom Whittaker and many others lesser known, some, as Diane Fossey, who've been murdered for their heroism. If not for the courage of these individuals, so much more would have been lost to this day. For the environmentalist the battle is never over and the war never won. Habitat loss is as as the clicking of a ratchet, it only turns one way.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 21st, 2012, 10:23 am 

Joined: October 21st, 2011, 2:30 am
Posts: 126
monklet wrote:
This would certainly appear to be a positive step and perhaps represents a shift toward a more positive relationship with wildlife in general.

squinn wrote:
when someone or some group does eventually relent or just sees the wisdom in not harvesting wild animals on a large scale and tries to compromise on this sort of issue the nature nazis just demand more and continue to whine and complain just as loudly as when they simply killed them all.


It's likely that to many readers the use of politically charged pejoratives undermines the credibility of the writer by revealing hard-line predispositions. ...and in regards to credibility of the above statement, do you have any case histories to support your assertion?

Now, as with any cause, there are unreasonable supporters with extreme views who perhaps are even in it for the wrong reasons. But is it possible that you're not fully aware of the rampant environmental destruction that has and will continue to occur and that whatever compromises have been made to appease environmental concerns serve only to slow that rate of destruction? Whiny or valiant, those who value nature in an undisturbed state are ultimately the losers. If they whine and complain it's for the loss of that they love, our very heritage as human animals. Such lament is a natural human reaction. And those whiners and complainers include John Muir, Rachel Carson, Margory Stoneman Douglas, Diane Fossey, Jane Goodall, Carl Pope, Michael Cousteau, Yvon Chouinard, Rom Whittaker and many others lesser known, some, as Diane Fossey, who've been murdered for their heroism. If not for the courage of these individuals, so much more would have been lost to this day. For the environmentalist the battle is never over and the war never won. Habitat loss is as as the clicking of a ratchet, it only turns one way.


do i need to cite cases to support that statement? does peta and the USHS tend to back off when organizations give in to them just a little bit or do they just tend to to take that as weakness and press harder?, were they satified any of the times the animal welfare act was tweaked to make the treatment of animals in captivity for various purposes more humane and caging/enrichment impoved? Are they satified and time hunting and fishing regulations are changed to be more stringent. I don't recall ever seeing a press release from Peta or ALF to the effect of "oh good you guys took care of that, i guess we can go do something else with our lives now." i'm sorry you don't like the term nature nazi would you care to suggest a euphamism that would be lest offensive to you yet still appropriately descriptive NATURE LOVERS seem to cast much too wide a net and would include people who like to shoot and kill things which would be a significant deviation from the group of people i am seeking to identify. Is tree huggers or earth muffins better?. I think that statement minus a minor disagreement over terminology is completely self-evident and requires absolutely no defending (well damn i guess i did inadvertantly cite an example with the AWA).


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 21st, 2012, 10:29 am 
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PETA is not an environmental organization. In fact, PETA is often at odds with environmental causes. As for your statement being completely self-evident, that may be so in your self-constructed reality but it is not so in mine.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 21st, 2012, 10:51 am 

Joined: October 21st, 2011, 2:30 am
Posts: 126
monklet wrote:
PETA is not an environmental organization. In fact, PETA is often at odds with environmental causes. As for your statement being completely self-evident, that may be so in your self-constructed reality but it is not so in mine.


http://articles.sfgate.com/2002-07-22/n ... roups-peta

note in the headline Peta and environmental groups referred to as "traditional allies" but that is a minor point concerning a thread about rattlesnakes. I might also add as part of my training in my field of employment this point has been repeatedly made to me in training sessions by law enforcement personnel. I guess we all have to read the information out there (sometimes conflicting information) and talk to people who deal with this stuff as part or all of their carreer, you sir can believe whatever you want to, me i'm going to believe the guys wearing the badges who deal with type of thing and be thankful they are there to protect me from these type of people. If you insist on more may i suggest google? with that clarification i'd like to not highjack this thread away from rattlesnakes anymore than we have.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 22nd, 2012, 7:48 am 

Joined: December 3rd, 2010, 12:06 pm
Posts: 1103
Quote:
No, from a conservation and DNR perspective it is not a perfect solution but it is a huge step in the right direction.


This is huge progress; "perfection" would mean everyone was happy; when does that ever happen? This is plenty good enough, for now and maybe even for good. So, thanks for the very good news. Hopefully, event attendance & revenues don't decline - it's all about the money, and they'll go back to "what worked" if this doesn't.

Intrusive thought - if they wind up back at "gotta give the masses some blood and guts to get the turnout" - Burm Bash meets Claxton Round-up? Leave the EDBs and other burrow commensals in peace, and crank up the winter Burm harvest? Stealth environmental ed? Call me a weirdo, go ahead...but I'm a fan of contingency planning, and two-fers. This "solution" would require a python ban work-around...which the 3 relevant wildlife agencies would probably be happy enough to effect, in order to maintain the end of harvesting the wild EDBs.

Anyway, back to the present - kudos to GaDNR for bird-dogging this. It takes real courage and a hell of an attention span to change an entrenched practice like this.

Another nasty intrusive thought - hopefully this doesn't lead to GaDNR now banning native-venomous possession for herpetoculturists. That would really sting.

Do you think more SE Chapter folks would see this (and maybe attend?) if it were posted in their regional forum?

Cheers,
Jimi


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 22nd, 2012, 9:07 am 
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Jimi, I was thinking about posting this in the SE board just in case.

Fortunately (unfortunately?) there are no burms in Georgia so having a burm roundup is out of the question however I have thought about how nice it would be to see a feral hog festival replace the rattlesnake roundups. The Fitzgerald roundup was converted to a chicken festival a number of years ago which apparently has been pretty successful. Thankfully the crowd at the claxton roundup is not in it for blood lust like the ones at Sweetwater texas. Yes, in the past all harvested snakes were ultimately killed but that took place after the event and out of the public eye. For the most part, I think someone attending the roundup this year without knowledge of the change in protocol may not notice a difference at all. I attended last year and am hoping to return this March to see what exactly is different but will be back in Vermont by then and likely will not have the finances for a 3-day trip to Georgia at that time.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 22nd, 2012, 2:17 pm 

Joined: October 21st, 2011, 2:30 am
Posts: 126
Gyri wrote:
Jimi, I was thinking about posting this in the SE board just in case.

Fortunately (unfortunately?) there are no burms in Georgia so having a burm roundup is out of the question however I have thought about how nice it would be to see a feral hog festival replace the rattlesnake roundups. The Fitzgerald roundup was converted to a chicken festival a number of years ago which apparently has been pretty successful. Thankfully the crowd at the claxton roundup is not in it for blood lust like the ones at Sweetwater texas. Yes, in the past all harvested snakes were ultimately killed but that took place after the event and out of the public eye. For the most part, I think someone attending the roundup this year without knowledge of the change in protocol may not notice a difference at all. I attended last year and am hoping to return this March to see what exactly is different but will be back in Vermont by then and likely will not have the finances for a 3-day trip to Georgia at that time.


lol the feral hog idea sounds wonderful. I was surprised to learn not long ago there is at least one state possibly more that actually regulate the hunting of feral hogs which makes absolutely no sense to me you would think it would be open bag limits on them any time of year as an invasive. I was under the impression in some states allowing the venomous to be kept was due to religious reasons for the snake handlers rather than the roundups but perhaps this isn't the case in Georgia. A burm roundup actually does sound intriguing and burms would have a whole lot more meat on them than the average rattler ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 22nd, 2012, 4:50 pm 
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Quote:
please keep us informed on this...it is a curious situation, apparently a "wildlife" club uses this as a fund raiser? Since they agree to not collect them, some of them agree it is not a a sound practice, yet they demand the government supply them with snakes in exchange for not taking themselves? That is a large collectin of high strung and uncommon rattlesnakes. ..why do they need so many? If they expect the DNR- government to provide the snakes, that is sort of like extortion..., I wonder what kind of precedent it will set? I am all about stopping exploitation of non-sustainable wildlife harvests, but it appears they want to have a spectacle of snake exploitation but not harvest them themselves...is this a solution to the problem? Maybe they could "rent" them from one of the tourist oriented/venom collecting businesses? Maybe this is some herpetoculturalists golden opportunity...providing diamondbacks for temporary spectacles...? From my vantage here on the west coast, this seems an odd situation, maybe I am missing some important point/aspect? Amazing how restrictive Geogia is in tems of keeping native herps, yet they apparently allow rattlesnake round-ups...? Hard to believe. BTW, is there solid data to show a decline in numbers or increase in effort and and decline in average size of snakes harvested at these round-ups? This is a fascinating conundrum...hard to understand given the way other wildlife is treated, harvested etc. Does the DNR argue or have evidence it is sustainable? I am willing to write a letter as you request, but you could you explain or refer me to information on why and how this all goes down? Otherwise I am at a loss for words, it is hard for me to make sense of it, and I am wondering if I don't know the facts or details? (It seems the harvesting of diamondbacks would result in "take" of Gopherus and Drymarchon...wouldn't that alone eliminate this "festival"?)


EDB's are a very common snake in captivity due to captivebreeding for the albino and other morphs. It would be very easy to provide this number of CB snakes for the purpose without touching wild pops at all.

CC


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 22nd, 2012, 7:41 pm 

Joined: December 3rd, 2010, 12:06 pm
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Quote:
there are no burms in Georgia


Hilarious, and, um, ahh, (no shit). Ha ha. Sorry for the misunderstanding. The 3 wildlife agencies I should have enumerated are FWS (USA), FWC (FL), and GaDNR (GA). The burms would come from the one and only place we KNOW THEY ARE, i.e., south FL. Python ban BS aside...

Anyway, sure you bet, a hog whack-a-rama would be sweet too. But I don't know the particulars of how they're managed in GA. In FL they're now designated as trespass livestock (and it was HELL getting that designation passed not so very long ago, from the previous "game" designation) - except for a very few select WMAs where they're still managed for, statewide it's now open season, no limits, any time, any how. Whack 'em and stack 'em. GA may not yet be so liberal.

Glad to hear the Claxton folks aren't like the Sweetwater ones.

Cheers,
Jimi


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 22nd, 2012, 10:33 pm 
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Ha, sorry, if I'd known you were from the southeast I wouldn't have even bothered to point out the notable absence of burms in GA. Hogs are open season, I don't even think you need a hunting license to take one out. I think people would really get fired up about that sort of roundup. I've half a mind to start one myself!


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 23rd, 2012, 6:06 am 

Joined: June 8th, 2010, 5:46 am
Posts: 457
Gyri wrote:
.........I've half a mind to start one myself!


And you're the perfect candidate to do it Gyri-you've got the connections to get it rolling....I'm pretty certain it'd pick up steam FAST.One taste of feral hog is all anyone would need to get on board! It's win-win all the way around. The rattlers(and anything else down a burrow) get a break, the hog-ravished habitat gets a break, the hungry locals get a tasty meal and whatever entertainment is thought up, the money-strapped town and the event sponsors/organizers get paid-all from the capture of local feral pigs.

The hog roundup is an idea I've been kicking around/suggesting for a while now(someone may have suggested it to me,I can't recall),esp. after hearing about and seeing first handhow prominent and destructive they are. Probably the second-most destructive species around in many areas down there.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 23rd, 2012, 9:19 am 

Joined: June 19th, 2010, 3:58 am
Posts: 68
Back to Georgia supplying 50 adult Eastern Diamondbacks for the weekend event every year. Granted, that's better than a hundred, but you need to accept that those 50 will most likely die, too. Well meaning wardens and area managers will pick up snakes as they encounter them during their regular daily activities. They will likely be noosed, tonged around the neck, or pinned and picked up by hand. Some will be pregnant females. Many will be captured long before the event, perhaps over the winter (short as it is in south Georgia).

These snakes won't likely feed, even if offered food. They will be in a mixed lot with no possible way of each snake being released exactly where it was caught. I feel that the wranglers at the event will not be able to resist pinning, handling, milking and utilizing the snakes in the various events they put on, i.e., snakes in the sleeping bag, rattlesnake golf, speed bagging contests etc. No owner or breeder is going to supply his captive snakes to go into the mix and be treated this way.

I realize that there has to be compromise. What is the average take these days? To they get 75 or a hundred? I don't know. I'm thinking it's not much more than the fifty they're requesting from the department. If these 50 snakes are going to die anyway, the main benefit I see is the sparing of the gopher tortoise comensals, such as Indigos, Pinesnakes, etc., through the lack off gassing. Gassing still takes place on a large scale by the hunters own admissions. And it's my opinion that regardless of the 50 supplied by the department, the hunting and taking of Eastern Diamondbacks will still take place like always. It's tradition and it's fun. The skins can still be sold to the tannery, and they may even get better prices now.

Unless they do what Mississippi did here in 1990, and both ban the round-ups and the sale of live rattlers and any parts thereof, the hunt will go on. Here in Mississippi you can't sell Eastern Diamondback or Canebrake skin boots even if the skins came from another state! And Mississippi is supposed to be 50th in everything!

Just some thoughts.

Cheers,

Terry Vandeventer


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 23rd, 2012, 9:29 am 
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Terry, the picture you paint is grim but trust me when I say that will not be happening. I know many of the people involved with this effort and can assure you snakes are not getting noosed, handled roughly, or taken from the wild. The people seeking and providing snakes know full well what they are doing. Snakes provided for the roundup will not be handled in demonstrations, period. If they want to do handling demonstrations my assumption is that the handler will need to provide his own. I believe he has his own personal snakes he can use for that purpose. I know he has an Atrox, it would not shock me to learn he has some EDBs as well or will in the very near future. The idea is that after this initial year, the same 50 snakes will be used year after year.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 23rd, 2012, 9:48 am 
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Terry Vandeventer wrote:
Back to Georgia supplying 50 adult Eastern Diamondbacks for the weekend event every year. Granted, that's better than a hundred, but you need to accept that those 50 will most likely die, too. Well meaning wardens and area managers will pick up snakes as they encounter them during their regular daily activities. They will likely be noosed, tonged around the neck, or pinned and picked up by hand. Some will be pregnant females. Many will be captured long before the event, perhaps over the winter (short as it is in south Georgia).

Terry Vandeventer


Not quite the case.
I, and several other herp keepers in GA, have recieved several emails/forwards from the DNR asking to borrow any captive EDBs or Canebrakes that we may be able to loan them. It has been assured that the animals will not be harmed, used only for exhibit, and then returned to their owners. From my understanding, no wild snakes will be collected for this substitution.
I am quite pleased with this news, and am hoping to head down there to see this event for myself.

--Berkeley


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 24th, 2012, 4:41 am 

Joined: June 15th, 2010, 4:23 am
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Location: Huntsville, Alabama
Why not just make it the Claxton Coyote, Armadillo and Feral Hog roundup?
(no, I'll pass on the coyote sauce picante, but will try the armadillo stew, please)
You know, to keep the theme of things that are really unwanted?
Oh, I know....the Claxton Politician Roundup!
Dems in blue and Reps in red. Now I'd pay good money to see that.
Seriously though, we have to admit Georgia has come a long way from just a few years ago if this is a 'roundup' using borrowed snakes that are for education and treated humanely.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 24th, 2012, 8:25 am 

Joined: June 10th, 2010, 8:49 pm
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I kind of like the idea of keeping it focused on rattlesnakes. Anything that can get folks focused on the idea that rattlesnakes are valuable members of the local ecosystems and are something special.

I realize the round-up has a long way to go to transition from a freak show to an educational wildlife festival but this is a big step.

Does Whigham still have a round-up?


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 24th, 2012, 8:27 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:18 pm
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Location: Northern New England
The Whigham roundup is this Saturday.


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 24th, 2012, 12:00 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:18 pm
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Location: Northern New England
It should be said, however, that if this reform at Claxton is successful that Whigham may follow. Both roundups have suffered decreasing numbers of rattlesnakes year after year. The events used to bring in hundreds of snakes but now typically end up with numbers closer to 50. Eventually there may not be enough snakes to draw a crowd or hunters will need to range farther away to get their snakes. I think the Evans County folk know that continuing with the old ways is simply not sustainable. This reform not only protects the populations of rattlesnakes near Claxton but also helps ensure that the event can continue to be a source of revenue for the community.

http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news ... -2012.html


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 25th, 2012, 11:20 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:18 pm
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Location: Northern New England
There is a poll on this news site asking if people think roundups are harmful and need to be ended. Right now the no side is winning but the number of voters has remained small. Please visit this site, the poll is at the bottom left of the page, and vote "yes"
http://www.cairomessenger.com/v2/conten ... 14&ID=2767


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 25th, 2012, 2:10 pm 

Joined: October 21st, 2011, 2:30 am
Posts: 126
Gyri wrote:
There is a poll on this news site asking if people think roundups are harmful and need to be ended. Right now the no side is winning but the number of voters has remained small. Please visit this site, the poll is at the bottom left of the page, and vote "yes"
http://www.cairomessenger.com/v2/conten ... 14&ID=2767


that's a really badly phrased question, specifically because i don't believe one needs or should be an animal rights activist to be against roundups. There is a vast difference between those that would like to see this stopped for ecological reasons and those who have the animal rights axe to grind.

"Animal rights activists have for many years sought the end to rattlesnake roundups similar to the one hosted each year in Whigham. Do you think roundups are harmful to animals and should be ended?"


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 Post subject: Re: Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup no longer killing snakes
PostPosted: January 25th, 2012, 2:25 pm 
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Joined: November 6th, 2010, 9:59 am
Posts: 481
Location: Athens, GA (Columbia, MO)
squinn wrote:
that's a really badly phrased question..........There is a vast difference between those that would like to see this stopped for ecological reasons and those who have the animal rights axe to grind.

Agreed, but the important part of the question is "Do you think roundups are harmful to animals and should be ended?"

In my opinion the worst thing about roundups is the negative attitude towards snakes that is cultured. Hopefully the new format of the Claxton roundup will be much more educational and maybe help change attitudes from fear and loathing to respect and appreciation.

Cairo is right near the Whigham roundup (now the last true roundup in Georgia), and maybe enough "yes" votes in the poll will convince the organizers that people would like to see change.


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