Need help.. Crash course in Native Ts / Collecting.

Mendnwngs

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Mar 30, 2003
Messages
128
I have a good friend who goes to the California Desert a couple times a year to collect / photograph snakes. This weekend, as an aside thought, He wanted to know if I would like to go with him. Hell Yeah ;)

I want to go mostly for the photographic aspect (Im an intermediate level photographer) But I think it might be a cool time to take a look at the local T population. I doubt Ill bring any home, (I really think Wild Ts should just stay that way, Wild) But hope to get some great pictures..

Heres the questions: What Ts are common in Southern CA? In the Desert?

When is the best time to find them out and about? Midnight? Morning?

What level of agressivness am I to look out for?

I have a snake "expert" going with us, but Id like to try and be the "expert" for the Ts. ;)

Any help is greatly appriciated.

Thanks guys.

-Jason
 

Paladin

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 20, 2002
Messages
536
well what desert do u plan on going? we go to Borego springs and also barstow and have run into a few t's. while 4 wheeling, whenever the club stops on the trail ill go rock flipping and havnt come across any t's that way. instead, we found a few while is was getting dark outside around our tents and also during the night.

oh and i never looked for t burrows...so thats something u might wanna try.

so you probably will find t's, not sure if you're gonna find too many under rocks but its a good chance. best bet would to look for the burrows.

you'll probably come across a bunch of aphonopelmas...browns ones lol

shouldnt be aggressive, just be careful if yur gonna handle them

going out with a flash light or a lantern would be a good way to find some as t's are mostly nocturnal and doing their hunting at that time
 
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MrT

Arachnoking
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Aug 13, 2002
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Jason,
Pretty much all you can do is ask around the area to see if any of the locals have seen any males in the fall.
I've found that if a male has been spotted, its likely he's from that area.
Then all you can do is take eoungh water for a long, long hike.
Look for holes the size of a quarter with webbing around it and in it. Remember, no webbing, no T. So don't waist your time or water on it.
Oh yes, you'll need to carry enough water to flood out the T's too.
Generally, it doesn't take that much water to get a T to come to the surface. Put a thin twig in the hole before you flood it, so you can get the T the rest of the way out by removing the stick, while prodding the T's butt at the same time.
Cover the hole after the spider comes out, so it doesn,t retreat back into it.
Aphonopelma's are calm for the most part. So I just catch em by hand. I let it climb, or run up my hand. I don't grab it.. Then transfer it to a deli cup. You'll want to use the old deli cup & lid method to catch your T.
The TKG has a good pic of a T hole.

Good luck,

Ernie

Oh yes, If you find a burrow, stand over it so your shadow is cast on it. T's as you know, don't like bright lights.
 

Mendnwngs

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Mar 30, 2003
Messages
128
We'll be collecting snakes all night, So Ts are more of a evening / morning thing.. I mostly want to see them in the wild, and take some pictures, I highly doubt Ill bring any home.

I have a 2 strobe frame for the camera, as well as a 3,000,000 candle power hotlight (battery operated, and color corrected) for taking pics of these guys.. Total light exposure for the T, maybe 30 seconds tops. Snap a pic, then be on our way.

Aphonopelma was the most common group I saw in all the info I could collect. (most common in CA).. We'll see what we find..

Barstow Is where I believe we are going.

Should be fun..

Ill be sure to post any pics I am able to take.

-Jason
 

MrT

Arachnoking
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Aug 13, 2002
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Its really hard to see the burrow holes at night. So I'd say its a daylite thing.
Unless you can find a burrow during the day, then setup to shoot your pic. when the T peeks out when the sun starts setting.

Good luck, it should be fun, fun, fun..:D

Ern
 

Mendnwngs

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Mar 30, 2003
Messages
128
Originally posted by MrT
Its really hard to see the burrow holes at night. So I'd say its a daylite thing.
Unless you can find a burrow during the day, then setup to shoot your pic. when the T peeks out when the sun starts setting.

Good luck, it should be fun, fun, fun..:D

Ern
Actually, were a lot geekier than that.. I was thinking of taking some "snap line" chalk (red) with me..We'll also have a GPS (Global Positioning System) handheld.. so as the day progresses, when we find a T burrow, we'll mark a tree, rock, etc clost to it, with the snap-line chalk, and mark the position on the GPS. Then at night, we'll go back to the spots to see whats going on there.. The GPS will get us to about 15-30 feet of the burrow, and the chalk mark should hone us in :)

Like I said, It should be interesting.. :)

-Jason
 

MrT

Arachnoking
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Aug 13, 2002
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Ok, Now I'm going. LOL
When do we leave?


E
 
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