Manchester woman finds rattlesnake on her property…twice

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MANCHESTER TOWNSHIP -

An Ocean County woman says that she found a dangerous, endangered rattlesnake on her property twice within a week.

Wildlife crews removed a 6-foot long timber rattlesnake from Leigh Anne Silver’s Manchester Township property last week. She says that it then happened again Wednesday night.

“We saw it about 5 p.m., actually my son’s dog spotted it. Started barking. There was a snake in the grass resting,” says Silver.

Both times, wildlife crews came and moved the snake to another area.

“We are not removing it from its habitat,” says Popcorn Park Zoo director John Bergmann. “We are just taking it out of the problem [area] and getting it into a different part of its habitat.”

Bergmann, who is also a venomous snake handler, says that sightings of the timber rattlesnake have been up this year.

“You want to stay away from it. You want to keep a really good distance, and if it's in an area where there may be pets, keep the pets away…keep people away, children especially,” he says.

Timer rattlesnakes are endangered in New Jersey, so harming or killing them is illegal. Bergmann praised Silver for how she handled seeing the snake.

“She handled it beautifully, and the fact that she knew who to call and made that call, instead of killing it,” he says.

Bites from the snake can be fatal. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has information about timber rattlesnakes, and what to do if you find one, on their website.

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