New York Man Goes to Jump-Start Car, Greeted By a Rattlesnake

posted by RJ Johnson - @rickerthewriter -

Trying to diagnose a rattle in your engine compartment can be difficult at times. Playing 'What's That Noise' usually ends up with a mechanic sticking you with a huge bill, so many people are understandably apprehensive when they open up the hood of their car.

But for one upstate New York man trying to jump-start his car, a strange rattling sound he heard coming from his engine wasn't a bad alternator or belt - it was a venomous Timber Rattlesnake. 

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation shared a photo of the rattler on its Facebook page saying one of their Environmental Conservation officers was dispatched to help the man in rural Hancock on the Pennsylvania border, to get rid of the snake. 

The man told the NYSDEC officer that he had opened up the hood of his vehicle to jump start his car when he heard the distinctive rattle of a snake. The man says he quickly backed away after seeing the large rattlesnake slither up over to the battery and curl up there. 

The DEC officers say the the snake was a timber rattlesnake who was probably just looking for shelter and figured the man's car made for a perfect hideout. 

One of the officers managed to extract the snake from the engine compartment while another helped untangle the rattlesnake's tail that was wrapped around part of the engine. The DEC's Facebook post says the two officers released the snake nearby, next to several large boulders, which is a far better habitat for snakes. 

There are 17 species of snakes in New York state, three of which are considered venomous, with the Timber Rattlesnake among them. The other two snakes that are dangerous include the Massasauga Rattlesnake, and the Copperhead. Snake experts say the best way to avoid being bit by one is to keep your distanced and to back away when you hear the snake's warning.

Photo: New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

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