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RE: Timber vs. Canebrake

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Posted by: justinian2120 at Tue Sep 19 17:31:49 2006  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by justinian2120 ]  
   

i dunno about that-regardless of what we call them from fla. to texas to new hampshire-yellow rattlers,velvet rattlers,velvet tails,canebrakes,timbers,black rattlers-what you have is a species that has two-maybe three- niches/clades/whatever;north,south,and perhaps west,though this last group seems to have a less clearly defined dilineation from the former two than they do from each other.i don't know too much about the western populations(and have precious little first hand experience with the southerns as well)-but i sure can see plenty justification for at least separating the southern from the northern/montanes(i.e. timbers and canebrakes seperate subsp. again)....
more often than not,i am moreso a 'lumper' than a 'splitter'-but i mean really,one has to wonder how can these be considered less different from each other than,say, such 'valid' subspecies as your triangulum,getula,or what about the black racer,in which the northern and southerns can only be differentiated from each other if they are males(difference in just the hemipenes)?...this being the taxonomic 'order of the day',then i just don't see how they should be considered one and the same.not talking about appearences,but just totally different habits/niches/ecosystems they occur in.
that being said i remember beign told that,i believe thru mitochondrial dna testing,the timbers in south jersey-the pine barrens-were,genetically speaking,most closely related to those along the gulf coast area,i beleive louisiana-very surprising...i don't claim to be an expert on these amazing,facinating snakes,but man i find them to be one of the most intruiging species in our country.
-----
"with head raised regally,and gazing at me with lidless eyes,he seemed to question with flicks of his long forked tongue my right to trespass on his territory" Carl Kauffeld


   

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