THE USE OF FLUORESCENT POWDERED PIGMENTS AS A TRACKING TECHNIQUE FOR SNAKES

Benjamin Furman, Brett Scheffers, Cynthia Paszkowski
Herpetological Conservation and Biology   unpublished
We describe a new technique for tracking snakes that is an alternative to radio-transmitters and thread trails. We coated the bodies of three species of garter snakes (Thamnophis) in fluorescent powder, then followed and marked the trails with a UV light at night. The use of a UV light allowed us to see very detailed paths left by the snakes. This technique was effective for snakes > 10 g and we tracked some individuals > 200 m. Because a portion of the paths ended in burrows, this technique
more » ... prove useful for locating hibernacula sites. Fluorescent powder tracking is a useful tool in determining where and how snakes move in a localized habitat.
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