From 11 July – 14 July, the Chiricahua Desert Museum in Rodeo, New Mexico hosted the 3rd meeting of the Biology of the Pitvipers. The line-up of speakers and the science being presented made for a thought-provoking and an incredibly enjoyable meeting.
Emily Taylor kicked off the meeting with a bang! After speaking about the representation of women in herpetology, Emily invited all of the women in attendance to the stage to stand in unity. The remaining members of the conference provided a standing ovation as the women made their way to stage. It was a moment and feeling that will not soon be forgotten!
Set in some of the best herp-itat, there was also plenty of time to find some critters. Although the rains didn’t cooperate, herps were still moving. Highlights included both a desert and a mountain kingsnake—because they’re basically non-venomous cobras—and a young C. atrox that showed up at our doorstep!
In the last session of the meeting, Bryan presented findings from a multi-year radiotelemetry project involving puff adders and highlighted that survival estimates in Crotaline populations may not be representative of all viper populations. This work is part of an on-going collaboration with Xavier Glaudas, Robin Maritz, and Graham Alexander.
To see more photos and insights from the meeting, check out the BOPV3 on Facebook.
After the conference, Bryan and Robin spent time with the SWRS Field Herpetology Course coordinated by Emily Taylor (CalPoly) and Steve Mullin (SFA). Although the lack of rain kept some of the herps in hiding, we did manage to see a lyre snake, patch-nosed snake, Mexican hognose snake, black-tailed rattlesnake, Sonoran whipsnake, short-horned lizard, Yarrow’s spiny lizard, Slevin’s bunchgrass lizard, Mexican and Couch’s spadefoot, and Sonoran desert toad. A great course to be part of; thanks for the invite!
Stay tuned for updates from JMIH at Snowbird!