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Indigo Snake Head-Start Project

Where: Conecuh National Forest, Alabama, U.S.
 
Continue Zoo Atlanta's efforts to support this critical conservation project.

Zoo Atlanta is proud to partner with Auburn University and The Orianne Society on a project to help restore native eastern indigo snakes to regional ecosystems.

Wild adult female indigo snakes are captured and maintained until they lay eggs and are then released. Eggs are incubated until they hatch. Hatchlings are then moved to Zoo Atlanta, where they are reared off-exhibit so that they don’t develop familiarity with humans. After about two years, when they are large enough to be safe from most natural predators, the snakes are outfitted with a small radio transmitter so that we can monitor their location and condition in the wild. The indigo snakes reared at Zoo Atlanta are released in Conecuh National Forest in southern Alabama.

Who:
Zoo Atlanta; Auburn University; The Orianne Society

 

Why:
Indigo snakes are particularly special to us because they’re found right here in Georgia. Because of their large size and appetites, this species needs a spacious natural habitat. Deforestation, busy roads and automobile traffic have taken a significant toll on these harmless snakes.

Indigo snakes are also affected by the practice known as the “Rattlesnake Roundup.” Because they share the same burrows, indigo snakes, eastern diamondback rattlesnakes and gopher tortoises are all affected by these needless exterminations.

Indigo Snake Conservation Cycle
Wild adult females are captured and maintained until they lay eggs, then released Eggs are incubated until hatching, then baby snakes are moved to Zoo Atlanta Baby snakes are raised on varied diet including: mice, minnows, tadpoles, and quail After only 2 years, the juvenile snakes already are about 3 feet long and ready for release Each snake has a small radio transmitter placed in its belly, so we can monitor their location and condition