Field notes and photography by Bryan D. Hughes

Pennylvania, Old and Alien to a Visiting Dried Up Desert Creature

Being from Arizona, and born in Oregon, it’s pretty cool to see someplace that’s so alien. Aside from just being so wet, green, and full of life, about every plant and animal was something new. Even the things that aren’t natural seemed odd, being older than 100 years old.

Old something or another in a field (while photographing a milksnake)


Limestone cliffs, caves, and amazing places everywhere:



Being from Oregon, green is familiar, but deciduous-everything was not. We hiked through miles of this habitat …



… looking for suitable basking areas like this …

Timber Rattlesnake Basking Area


… finding weird little creatures like these, which look like lizards but clearly are not (we have just one species of Salamander in Arizona, which are not under every single surface as they are in PA) …

Northern Redback Salamander


… eventually leading to our target, the amazingly stocky (in relation to our skinny desert snakes) Timber Rattlesnake, Crotalus horridus.

Crotalus horridus





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