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Name:   Pat
Status:   other
Age:   30s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 2000-2001

Can you tell me if there are any poisonous snakes in the Cook County area? I was at a lodge in Sauk Village where there is a lake and a lot of weeds/trees. Someone opened a shed there and said that there was a pygmy rattle snake in it. Is that a possibility?

According to the 1999 published "Field Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Illinois", Illinois Natural History Survey Manual #8, Massasauga rattlesnakes have extremely few and scattered populations in Cook County and verified specimens have been obtained. They are endangered and very rare, and their venom does not have a serious effect on humans. They will strike when surprised, otherwise, they flee.

Steve Sample
York High School
Elmhurst, Illinois

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