Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Rattlesnake Wrestling

Yesterday was quite the day for reptiles. On my hike at Windy Hill I saw ten lizards and five snakes! There were two rattlesnakes, one normal looking garter snake, one garter snake with a red stripe on its belly (which I think is rare and endangered) plus another big snake which I mistook for a rattler at first but wound up not having rattles.

The most exciting, though was the show by these two rattlesnakes. Luckily I happened to notice them when I was 20 feet away and not as I was passing next to them. At first all I saw were two heads sticking out of the grass, swaying like they were in a snake charming act. Then they started wrestling and tumbled down on to the trail where I could see them better. They were twined around each other and it looked like arm wrestling except the arms weren't attached to anything. Apparently its pretty rare to catch this behavior on video.

I stuck around for 20 or 30 minutes watching them partly because it was so interesting and partly because they were blocking my way. They never moved more than a few feet from the trail though so I finally turned around and took a different route.

Rattlesnakes Rattlesnake Dance Shot of Rattles

Video: Rattlesnakes, 2 minutes
Download: Rattlesnakes.mp4, 32 MB

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Blogger ettesa said...

I was travelling across country using a halfords sat nav when it went hazy I pulled over to reset it and turned towards the roadside, I saw two rattlers dancing just like those on the vid it was amazing to see.

3:36 AM  

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