Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake: Ohio Population Survey and Survey Technique Development

The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) currently spends a great deal of time and effort on survey, avoidance, and minimization measures that are implemented for projects with regard to the federally threatened Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake (EMR). ODOT's effect determinations under the Endangered Species Act on this species are currently based in part on the Ohio range maps produced by The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). These range maps were produced from known records of the species presence, but also include areas based on anecdotal accounts and areas with good habitat where it is suspected the species may reside. When impacting suitable habitat within this range, ODOT conducts extensive field surveys to determine the presence of the species. These surveys include placing numerous sheets of tin (which function as artificial habitats that snakes hide under) in the survey area and checking these sheets of tin on a weekly basis for several months during the summer. This is a very time consuming and costly process. The goal of this research is to modify existing or identify new effective options to further refine the known range of the species. The objective of Phase 1 of this research is to: (1) Find or develop more efficient methods for conducting EMR surveys. (2) Create a comparison matrix for current methods and other potential survey methods.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $514,283.88
  • Contract Numbers:




  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Managing Organizations:

    Ohio Department of Transportation

    Research Program
    1980 West Broad Street
    Columbus, OH  United States  43223
  • Project Managers:

    Nye, Kelly

  • Performing Organizations:

    The Ohio State University

    2036 Neil Avenue
    Columbus, OH  United States  43210
  • Principal Investigators:

    Peterman, William

  • Start Date: 20181217
  • Expected Completion Date: 20230517
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01689603
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Ohio Department of Transportation
  • Contract Numbers: 32375, 135770, 107308
  • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
  • Created Date: Dec 21 2018 11:04AM