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SOUTH CAROLINA
March 2013
 1 of 1
SOUTH CAROLINA
March 2013
 1 of 1
By now South Carolina has become a fixture on my calendar, reconnecting each spring with the same group of friends in search of rattlesnakes and whatever else comes our way.  The locations vary, and so does our luck, but no matter; walking the longleaf is where I want be in March.   This year we scouted a new research site for Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes, an area with very few reported in recent years.  We needed to know:  Did suitable habitat remain, and were the snakes still there?   The short answer was, yes, there was decent habitat, but no EDBs were found during the month of our survey.  It certainly wasn’t for want of trying  altogether we spent nearly 700 hours searching 3,400 acres, collectively hiking over 1,000 miles  and we weren’t really surprised. Under the best of circumstances, Diamondbacks are hard to find in natural surroundings, and the degree of difficulty soars where populations are sparse.   At least we encountered a nice selection of other species, some of which were found during my tour of duty:        A sampling from a different area:       And then a bit of luck.  Just a few days after our survey concluded, a juvenile EDB was found crossing a road in the study area, the first documented sighting in years!  So although we missed seeing it first-hand, here was evidence of continued presence, and a starting point to continue the search next year.
Timber (Canebrake) Rattlesnake Crotalus horridus
Eastern Hognose Snake Heterodon platirhinos
Corn Snake Pantherophis guttatus
Carolina Pygmy Rattlesnake Sistrurus miliarius miliarius
Southern Black Racer Coluber constrictor priapus
Mabee’s Salamander  Ambystoma mabeei
Broken-striped Newt Notophthalmus viridescens dorsalis
Eastern River Cooter  Pseudemys concinna concinna
Eastern Coachwhip  Masticophis flagellum flagellum