Living Alongside Wildlife
The title of this blog, Living Alongside Wildlife, is a reference to a land ethic suggesting human and wildlife populations can coexist if we respect our natural resources. Our goals should include living alongside wildlife in perpetuity, rather than unsustainable exploitation, wanton killing and irreversible destruction of their habitats. For more about conservation and land ethics, check out the work of Aldo Leopold, particularly A Sand County Almanac. These essays were a great influence in formulating my own stances on various environmental issues. When I created this blog I had two primary goals. The first of which was to encourage an appreciation for wildlife that tend to have a bad reputation, primarily amphibians and reptiles. The second goal was to make my research accessible to a general audience. Over time, a third goal manifested itself. Many are generally unfamiliar with the natural history of reptiles; as a result there are a plethora of e-mail forwards containing outlandish stories and photos of these animals. All too often, these e-mails are circulated and accepted as fact. For animals that are already maligned, scary and fabricated stories only serve to perpetuate the myth they are dangerous and malevolent. Perhaps this is no more true than in the case of the giant dead rattlesnakes, wherein a dead rattlesnake is shoved towards the camera and a bogus story is made up about how various townsfolk were saved in the nick of time by the marauding monster. I use this blog to discuss these e-mail forwards, which I\'m often able to debunk based solely on the biology of the organism in question.
Living Alongside Wildlife's Latest Posts
Living Alongside Wildlife is now on Facebook. You know what to do. Did you catch this Slate story about why it's not a good idea to release snakes in your yard to reduce the number of Copperheads, featuring lots of input by yours truly? If that wasn't enough of me for you, check out this piece on Vet Street about why we shouldn't be so afraid of snakes. Must see incredible pictures of leaping
1) This is the snake (on right) that started my whole concern (a five-footer that was in our yard). I've been told it was a black ratsnake. Is it?... My snake-obsessed little boy spotted a snake (second picture) on our evening walk tonight. We know it's not a copperhead or black rat snake or king snake—do you know what kind it is? It was thin and about 20 inches long. You would have been proud
Sorry folks-that snake they fished out of an Alabama toilet was not a Cottonmouth. I'm very excited because Rat Snake Freakouts are one of my favorite topics to write about. If you're new to the blog, these freakouts occur when people see a Rat Snake (i.e., a very common snake on the East Coast of the United States in the Pantherophis genus) and freak.the.hell.out. Often, people freak when
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