I'm intrigued with all the posibilities that telemetry presents. Along with what you brought up I'm particularly interested in what locations are selected as rookeries and hibernacula.
In our subsequent conversation I realized we may have gone into depths & details that could discourage or turn away people who aren't likely to enjoy a chance to do snake telemetry. Which is probably most folks here.
I wouldn't want to do that. Phil's gorgeous "binder full of timbers" (his series of photos of many different individual snakes) brings to mind the contributions anyone
here could make, if they put some thought and effort into it. It would take some coordination with a study designer or an ongoing investigation (whether at an agency or an academic institution), but a "mark-recapture" effort using photos to ID unmolested individual snakes could really bolster & complement the information created from a telemetry experiment. Or you could participate in a stand-alone mark-recapture project - no radio work needed.
A guy with a camera & some operating skills, some note-taking skills and some field craft (does this sound like anyone on FHF
?!?) can gather info on a lot more animals
, over a lot longer time span
, than a guy with a radio receiver and a handful or implanted study subjects. (The radio guy obviously enjoys major advantages with his approach too; however, cheap, easy, and convenient are not
On a lighter note, I hope Phil's photos can begin to dispel the common notion that Kentucky has the ugliest timbers! Several of those are pretty sweet
. (And yeah, one or two are kinda fugly, ha ha. Every batch has 'em.)
Oh yeah. Gerry. Dude, can't you see it's not "science and scientists" that bug me? It's the academician system that has grown up around them, that has insulated them from the broader society they inhabit. The society that becomes increasingly alienated against them. The society that - for now - supports & invests in them lavishly, and that they should repay in service. Many do, but many do not - some reject the very notion - and from what I observe the latter trend might be accelerating (individuals find it hard to buck the system), and it certainly isn't getting better. I think we do our younger or less formally-educated readers a service in airing some hard realities. Really, this is the same argument one could make against the plutocrats who do not want to pony up to do their part in resolving our deep, structural, economic quagmire: "Don't be a club of arrogant antisocial pricks, the fact is, we're all in this together; like it, deny it, hate it, doesn't really matter, it just IS. So pull your weight and then some, or we can all go down together."
(You know, if I was on a capitalists' forum I'd be saying the same thing, and probably be getting called anti-capitalist for it, a traitor even. Nothing could be farther from the truth. And attacking the messenger doesn't change or silence the message, it just pisses off the sender.)
As far as basic vs applied science - we're not talking about quantum physics here, we're - at least, I am - talking about conservation. An applied discipline. The very mission of NAFHA. Nothing basic about it.
Finally, as for your worries about FHF readers perverting what I say here or anywhere into an iota of support, validation, endorsement, etc for "Foxy Newsie" et al - either 1) you're grossly underestimating many people's comprehension abilities, and/or 2) you're concerning yourself with a few people who are too far gone to reach anyway, and/or 3) you're suffering paranoid delusions. I don't really care which it is. Just get it dealt with, if possible. Until then, see ya, I gotta go dig some pipe trench. Hope it's a nice day where you are - it sure is here!