Often taking advantage of the animals' denning behavior to capture large numbers at a time, hunters deliver live snakes to commercial dealers who are contracted by event organizers to supply the animals as a source of entertainment: from snake handling and snake races to snake sacking, snake skinning, snake milking, and snake education activities. Rattlesnake products of various types are also sold and consumed at the events.
In this close-up look at rattlesnake roundups in Texas, Clark E. Adams and John K. Thomas present perhaps the first full description of this social and environmental phenomenon, tracking its popularity, its participants, its opponents, its impact on the communities where it occurs, and, as much as is possible, its effects on the rattlesnake itself.
In recent years, the commercial trade in Texas animals has emerged as a serious and controversial issue, and the number of roundups has declined sharply. Texas Rattlesnake Roundups promises to provide a balanced starting point for all those interested in knowing more about this curious custom.
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Published by Texas A&M University Press