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Meet the Snake Kings of Saguaro National Park

During the recent BioBlitz in the Saguaro National park, Arizona, we met two members of the Tucson Herpetological Society: Robert Villa and Hanna Strauss. The Tucson Herp Society is dedicated to conservation, education and research concerning the amphibians and reptiles of Arizona and Mexico. Villa and Strauss were at the BioBlitz with two species of king snake to talk about these special reptiles found in the park.

As can be seen from the video, the snakes are startlingly different. One is red and the other black. But as docile and friendly as they appear, apparently they dine on a snake most people would rather not encounter — rattlesnakes.

Snakes play a massive role in keeping the entire Saguaro ecosystem in balance, so we really need to look after and appreciate them.

12418031_10153900711084116_8462971761216697621_nDavid Braun is director of outreach with the digital and social media team illuminating the National Geographic Society’s explorer, science, and education programs.

He edits National Geographic Voices, hosting a global discussion on issues resonating with the Society’s mission and major initiatives. Contributors include grantees and Society partners, as well as universities, foundations, interest groups, and individuals dedicated to a sustainable world. More than 50,000 readers have participated in 10,000 conversations.

Braun also directs the Society side of the Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship

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