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Detroit Zoological Society Sheds Light on Snake Conservation

World Snake Day celebration to be held July 16 at the Detroit Zoo

The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) is celebrating World Snake Day on Tuesday, July 16, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Detroit Zoo’s Holden Reptile Conservation Center. The event will include hands-on learning activities, zookeeper talks and opportunities for visitors to learn about snake conservation.

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Zookeeper talks will be held at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Guests will be able to immerse themselves in the world of snakes by participating in conservation activities and making observations about different snake species based on their patterns.

The DZS’s conservation efforts for the massasauga rattlesnake will also be featured. Of the more than 3,000 species of snakes in the world, 500 are venomous, with only one – the massasauga rattlesnake – found in Michigan.

“Many people fear snakes, and this misplaced fear often results in people killing them,” said Scott Carter, DZS chief life sciences officer. “This is obviously bad for the snakes, but it is also bad for the ecosystems that snakes are integral parts of. World Snake Day gives us the chance to dispel some of the misperceptions and to help snakes and the environment.”

The DZS leads and oversees the Massasauga Rattlesnake Species Survival Plan through the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), a comprehensive population management plan that ensures the sustainability of a healthy, genetically diverse and demographically strong captive population in 23 AZA-accredited institutions. The DZS also leads and contributes to field research in Michigan to understand and conserve this threatened species.

The Detroit Zoological Society – a renowned leader in humane education, wildlife conservation, animal welfare and environmental sustainability – operates the Detroit Zoo and Belle Isle Nature Center.  With an annual regional economic impact of more than $167 million, the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak is one of Michigan’s largest paid family attractions, hosting more than 1.3 million visitors annually.  Its 125 acres of award-winning naturalistic habitats are home to 2,400 animals representing 235 species.  The Belle Isle Nature Center sits on a 5-acre site surrounded by undisturbed forested wetlands on Belle Isle State Park in Detroit.  It provides year-round educational, recreational and environmental conservation opportunities for the community.  For hours, prices, directions and other information, call (248) 541-5717 or visit detroitzoo.org.

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