Texas Parks & Wildlife Department wants to ban gassing rattlesnakes

By contributing writer Peggy Browning
What happens when you spray gasoline or other toxic chemicals into caves, between crevices of rocky outcroppings, or down the burrows of animals on the rolling plains?
When faced with noxious fumes, slow-moving, groggy rattlesnakes will inevitably emerge from their natural habitats. They are often sickened by the gassing and some of them die on the spot where their lairs were sprayed.
When the snakes retreat from their hiding places, they are accompanied by all the other inhabitants of the poisoned area. Other species of animals besides the rattlesnakes are affected by the gassing of their environment.
They are the innocent bystanders of the animal world. This includes other species of snakes as well as lizards, toads, prairie dogs, rabbits, and other burrowing animals. Gassing does not discriminate. It kills, sickens, or displaces all wildlife in the area affected.
Since 2010, The Texas Parks & Wildlife Department has been questioning this indiscriminate method of rattlesnake capture and has been working on banning the gassing of rattlesnakes. Texas hopes to join thirty other states that have already banned the use of gas and other chemicals for rattlesnake capture. To read more pick up the April 2014 issue of North Texas Farm & Ranch.

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