Back in May I travelled to Michigan in order to film the Massasauga rattlesnake. It was an incredible week working alongside scientists who are documenting the population of this fascinating wetland species and the snake fungal disease which is affecting it. The video is finished now so all the information you need is here:
A lot of people ask how close I needed to get to the snakes to get some of these shots. Well I suppose often about a meter away, but they are not particularly big. However, I can't stress enough how placid these creatures are. Even with scientists collecting data on them for a considerable amount of time, they rarely ever strike. As Jen says in the video one of the main problems they face is direct persecution because people fear them, but they really don't deserve that reputation at all.
This isn't a rattlesnake. It is an Eastern Garter snake. The wetlands and woodlands of Hastings are stunning and brimming with reptiles and amphibians, so I will take this opportunity to share some photos I took while there.
Gray tree frogs (Hyla versicolor), green frogs (Lithobates clamitans), wood frogs (Lithobates sylvatica) and American toads (Anaxyrus americanus).
This cheeky leopard frog was actually in Omaha, at the botanical gardens, which are great.