Diamondback rattlers swimming the magroves?

I went to visit a rental I have today and the tenants advised they had taken a charter out back behind Cudjoe Key through Bow Channel. I don't know exactly where they went but they were adjacent to one of the mangrove keys back there and caught some sharks and a bonefish. A pretty good size rattlesnake like maybe 3' long swam up to their boat and was looking to climb their anchor rope. They showed me some photos of it next to the boat. Definitely not BS. Their guide was shocked and I was pretty taken aback myself. I have never seen a snake back there or a croc for that matter. Anyone ever see any rattlesnakes in the back country?

Replies

  • Pescatoral PursuitPescatoral Pursuit Posts: 5,065 Admiral
    It happens.
    cuda-title2_zpsb81e4f1d.jpg
    greggl wrote: »
    Strive for self-sacrificial levels of empathy and sympathy. We are only set free by becoming the scapegoat, or sin eater', rather than picking a target and 'throwing stones.'
    nuevowavo wrote:
    Think you're pretty clever? Think again. Time for a break.
    :rotflmao
  • fish_stixfish_stix Posts: 1,281 Officer
    Don't know about the situation today but years ago (late 40s and 50s) Big Pine was rattler haven! If they were there, they were, and are on other keys too. They're not afraid to swim and I've seen plenty in the Indian River.
  • PBTHPBTH Posts: 92 Deckhand
    Plenty of them in the Contents and Sawyers. They are fairly common in the backcountry.
  • DogDocDogDoc Posts: 686 Officer
    We saw one (Eastern Diamondback) dead on the highway above Marathon several years back, and I think that Capt Bill had one near his house on Ramrod as well. They are not common on the major islands because of the roadkill issue, but are native to the area and found more often on the uninhabited keys. They are excellent swimmers.
  • lowe-boylowe-boy Posts: 1,217 Officer
    its a good thing one of the monkeys from the islands didn't go bananas in their boat.

    The island near cudjoe has a bunch
    The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.
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  • mtd885mtd885 Posts: 1,159 Officer
    I went to visit a rental I have today and the tenants advised they had taken a charter out back behind Cudjoe Key through Bow Channel. I don't know exactly where they went but they were adjacent to one of the mangrove keys back there and caught some sharks and a bonefish. A pretty good size rattlesnake like maybe 3' long swam up to their boat and was looking to climb their anchor rope. They showed me some photos of it next to the boat. Definitely not BS. Their guide was shocked and I was pretty taken aback myself. I have never seen a snake back there or a croc for that matter. Anyone ever see any rattlesnakes in the back country?

    Back in the 80's I was on my way to pick my son up from Kindergarten (we lived on a 300 acre ranch in Nor Cal) when I saw a big Rattler heading towards the play area. I harvested it. Not wanting to waste it I skinned it and fried it up. I made a hat band out of the skin for my Stetson. The snake was very tasty and I would definitely eat it again. Another occasion I was fishing Shad on the Sacramento river when one swam up to me. I fended it off with my fly rod, scary! I had no idea they were native to the Keys!
  • The Cat's EyeThe Cat's Eye Posts: 1,240 Officer
    Back in the mid 90's i was coming out of the back area of Hell's Bay and spotted a HUGE rattlesnake swimming across a small bay 500 yd's SE of the Hell's Bay Chickee. We approached it close enough to count its rattle segments at 21 ! (I was sheparding a young teenager (16 yo) on his brand new flats skiff that his daddy just bought him. However, to save a few bucks, his father mounted an older outboard on the new boat and this engine was giving us starting problems all day long.)

    When we got close to the serpent the teenager turned OFF the engine (To my surprise and shock) and at that moment the beast did a 90 degree turn and tried to board us! I blocked its advance with the only object i could find quickly, which was the cushion I was sitting on. The snake was easily 8 feet in length and it tried its best to get around the cushion i was holding in my hands. The naive helmsman finally got the old outboard to fire up while i was screaming my lungs out. As soon a the engine came to life, the huge snake did another 90 degree turn and resuming its original course.
    Giimoozaabi
  • Permit RatPermit Rat Posts: 2,283 Captain
    lowe-boy wrote: »
    its a good thing one of the monkeys from the islands didn't go bananas in their boat.

    The island near cudjoe has a bunch

    I thought they removed all the monkeys from Raccoon Key.....did some escape and are living wild back there? If so, which keys?

    I have always known about the possibility of rattlesnakes in the Keys and have seen several photos of them. But I always thought they stayed pretty close to the areas around US-1, where there would be human influence....meaning a source of fresh water collected in our debris (old tires, etc.) Never knew there were populations of them in the out islands. Seems to me that just a few snakes could eliminate any rat populations and fairly quickly.
    .......Rick
  • capt louiecapt louie citrus countyPosts: 9,675 Moderator
    Permit Rat wrote: »
    I thought they removed all the monkeys from Raccoon Key.....did some escape and are living wild back there? If so, which keys?

    Those are gone. There was another key on the North side that had some but they are also gone.

    I caught a 30" bonefish once near Raccoon key while looking at the monkeys.

    Big pine has always had rattlers so am sure the storms have moved some around.
    "You'll get your weather"
  • Split1Split1 Posts: 11 Greenhorn
    We killed a 6' + Diamondback that swam out of the mangroves into the neighborhood in Everglades City. Freaky big!
  • torchkeytorchkey Posts: 12 Greenhorn
    Good to know. I'm in the backcountry all the time. Haven't seen one yet, hope I don't. I know I'll keep them in mind next time I'm close to the mangroves. Thanks for the reports!
    torchkeycharters.com
    Lower Florida Keys Flats - Backcountry
  • mikeloewmikeloew Posts: 331 Deckhand
    Back in the mid 90's i was coming out of the back area of Hell's Bay and spotted a HUGE rattlesnake swimming across a small bay 500 yd's SE of the Hell's Bay Chickee. We approached it close enough to count its rattle segments at 21 ! (I was sheparding a young teenager (16 yo) on his brand new flats skiff that his daddy just bought him. However, to save a few bucks, his father mounted an older outboard on the new boat and this engine was giving us starting problems all day long.)

    When we got close to the serpent the teenager turned OFF the engine (To my surprise and shock) and at that moment the beast did a 90 degree turn and tried to board us! I blocked its advance with the only object i could find quickly, which was the cushion I was sitting on. The snake was easily 8 feet in length and it tried its best to get around the cushion i was holding in my hands. The naive helmsman finally got the old outboard to fire up while i was screaming my lungs out. As soon a the engine came to life, the huge snake did another 90 degree turn and resuming its original course.

    LOL your story reminds me of this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0u8KUgUqprw
    Marathon vacation home for rent

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  • The Cat's EyeThe Cat's Eye Posts: 1,240 Officer
    mikeloew wrote: »
    LOL your story reminds me of this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0u8KUgUqprw


    I can only say that the main difference between my story and the Seinfeld episode is that my story was witnessed by another forum member that i do not want to identify and embarrass, since he's a lot older and wiser now and a very accomplished fisherman, and has even won major tournaments in the ENP.
    Giimoozaabi
  • conchydongconchydong Pompano BeachPosts: 4,117 Captain
    I have seen rattlers twice swimming in Bow channel so it is not uncommon at all. I saw a road construction worker holding up a dead 6'er near the Harris Gap bridge. I heard plenty stories about the old days in the Keys that rattlesnakes were oft found near the outhouses making using the bathroom a little extra challenging. I guess rats were near the outhouses also.

    “Everyone behaves badly--given the chance.”
    ― Ernest Hemingway

  • pinfisherpinfisher Posts: 317 Deckhand
    The northwest mangroves on cudjoe aren't called rattlesnake lumps for nothing
  • bagsterbagster Posts: 2 Greenhorn
    pinfisher wrote: »
    The northwest mangroves on cudjoe aren't called rattlesnake lumps for nothing


    There's not much good news in this thread.
  • mikeloewmikeloew Posts: 331 Deckhand
    I can only say that the main difference between my story and the Seinfeld episode is that my story was witnessed by another forum member that i do not want to identify and embarrass, since he's a lot older and wiser now and a very accomplished fisherman, and has even won major tournaments in the ENP.
    I did not mean to imply, I didn't believe your story, I just thought it was funny.
    Marathon vacation home for rent

    http://www.floridakeyshomeforrent.com/
  • SpineymanSpineyman Posts: 7,920 Admiral
    Kayak Rookie...and loving it.
    Fishing beautiful Destin / Ft Walton Beach area!

    II Chronicles 7:14
    if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.



  • dolfanjoeydolfanjoey Posts: 1,173 Officer
    I use to see them all the time in the late 70's and early 80's on Ramrod Key Ocean side. Haven't seen any in a while, but back then there wasn't a house on every lot.
  • mtd885mtd885 Posts: 1,159 Officer
    Maybe the the wildlife is moving south from BPK for a reason. My wife saw a key deer in our yard yesterday, Floyd the Croc, Diamondbacks. We have several empty lots in the neighborhood for habitat.
  • pinfisherpinfisher Posts: 317 Deckhand
    The feds moved some key deer to northeast of cudjoe. we had one swimming in our canal this summer.
  • mtd885mtd885 Posts: 1,159 Officer
    pinfisher wrote: »
    The feds moved some key deer to northeast of cudjoe. we had one swimming in our canal this summer.

    How do you come by this info? I've been reading the local rags and no one has mentioned it!
  • kempsharkkempshark Posts: 125 Deckhand
    I thought they moved some Key deer to down by Cudjoe several years back at least (may have been longer ago than that, can't remember). Unless it's an ongoing operation I don't think it's anything new.
    Nah.....I'll eat Hellmann's. :wink
  • conchydongconchydong Pompano BeachPosts: 4,117 Captain
    I know they placed some deer in the pineland area near Indian Mounds on Sugarloaf many years ago and like the diamondbacks the deer swim across the channels looking for food or expanding their territory.

    “Everyone behaves badly--given the chance.”
    ― Ernest Hemingway

  • pinfisherpinfisher Posts: 317 Deckhand
    kempshark wrote: »
    I thought they moved some Key deer to down by Cudjoe several years back at least (may have been longer ago than that, can't remember). Unless it's an ongoing operation I don't think it's anything new.
    It's been 6-7 years ago when they moved the deer
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