In most towns it'd be considered unthinkably cruel to have a contest where citizens catch and kill an animal with no limit. But in the Southeast two rattlesnake "roundups" still exist where killing wildlife is supposed fun.
The target of the two roundups in Whigham, Ga., and Opp, Ala., is the rare eastern diamondback rattlesnake. Populations of the snake have been so destroyed that, following a Center petition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found that these rattlers may need protection as an endangered species.
Rattlesnakes play a key role in the food web, especially in terms of rodent control. And because hunters often use gasoline to drive snakes from their dens, roundups are also harmful to hundreds of other species that share the dens as a home.
May 8, 2015 Action Alert ID# 218
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