Snake talk planned as researcher continues study into South Okanagan rattlesnake roadkills | Penticton News | iNFOnews

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Snake talk planned as researcher continues study into South Okanagan rattlesnake roadkills

A study into rattlesnake mortality in the South Okanagan's White Lake basin continued this year.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED: Kaleden Senior's Committee
September 23, 2020 - 8:30 PM

An Okanagan snake researcher is preparing a lecture to discuss her studies and educate the public about the valley’s seven species of snakes.

Snake researchers Michell Matson and Jade Spruyt are in the second year of a snake research project on White Lake Road, located about 15 kilometres southwest of Penticton.

Matson is preparing a lecture on snakes in the South Okanagan at Kaleden’s Pioneer Park on Sept. 28 at 11 a.m.

Matson hopes to have snakeskins shed by the region’s gopher, racer and rattlesnake species on display, along with a series of photos of the Okanagan’s different species. She’s also planning on bringing some of the gear used in the research and tagging project on White Lake Road.

She and Spruyt are focussing on rattlesnake road mortality, studying the effectiveness of directional fencing and culverts that were installed under White Lake Road to aid snakes’ road crossings.

Matson says a previous researcher, Stephanie Winton, conducted research that revealed if nothing was done to mitigate the the number of rattlesnakes getting run over, the population of snakes in the basin would be gone in the next 100 years.

Part of Matson’s talk will be an update on the summer’s research on White Lake Road.

The study area is along White Lake Road, about 15 km southwest of Penticton.
The study area is along White Lake Road, about 15 km southwest of Penticton.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED: Kaleden Senior's Committee

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