Rattlesnake spotted in South Jersey town … or not
Sure, the Timber Rattlesnake is indigenous to New Jersey, but there aren’t that many sightings.
Officials in Winslow Township in Camden County warned residents to be on the lookout for the venomous snake after one was spotted in the Albion section of the township. UPDATE, Thursday: Though Winslow officials said at first they'd confirmed a rattlesnake sighting, based on information from the state Department of Environmental Protection, Winslow and the DEP now say it was "in fact a non-venomous adult black rat snake that is not a danger to people."
According to the Courier Post Online, a rattlesnake such as the one originally identified is usually confined to the Pine Barrens and is one of only two types of venomous snakes in New Jersey. It is the only rattlesnake found in the northeastern US.
If you spot one, the DEP recommends you don’t approach it. While it is typically shy, it will strike if threatened and has a high venom yield. The DEP says to call 911 if you spot one; also, don’t kill it because it is considered endangered by the Department of Fish and Wildlife. If you really want to be industrious, the DEP says to take a picture of it (without getting too close) and fill out a Rare Wildlife Sighting Report.
Last year, a timber rattlesnake was removed by the DEP’s Venomous Snake Response Team from a Manchester Township woman’s yard and relocated away from residential areas.
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