Two environmental groups are petitioning the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to have the eastern diamondback rattlesnake, which is a Keys denizen, to be put on the threatened species list, and the state wants your help in doing some research.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission wants residents to report any sightings of such snakes going back to 2000, and to be as specific as possible.
You can report sightings online at https://public.myfwc.com/FWRI/DRS/ or send an e-mail to Kevin Enge, associate research scientist in the Reptile and Amphibian Research Subsection of the FWC's Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in Gainesville. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The best would be to report the latitude and longitude of where the snake was spotted (which can be found on Google Earth), or the street address.
"If you don't remember exactly where it was found, we would still be interested in the sighting if it came from a conservation land. It's fine if you don't remember the month or the exact year, as long as it was post-2000," the FWC said in a prepared statement.
Any photos sent will be "vouchered" in your name in the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida.
Enge can be reached at (352) 334-4209.
The groups that want the diamondback rattlesnake listed as endangered are the Center for Biological Diversity and the Coastal Plains Institute.