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Texas Parks and Wildlife hearing about ban on gassing rattlesnakes delayed

By Jennifer Kendall, jkendall@ktxs.com
Published On: Jan 21 2014 08:25:53 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 22 2014 08:28:47 AM CST
SWEETWATER, Texas -

A proposal to make it illegal to use gas to collect rattlesnakes in Texas was supposed to be discussed Thursday by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission, but the plans have changed.

According to state Rep. Susan King and Sweetwater Mayor Greg Wortham, Thursday’s meeting has been delayed so that the proposed rule could be reworked and republished. That rule would make it illegal to use gas in order to collect rattlesnakes. That’s the major way snake hunters gather rattlers.

Texas Parks and Wildlife officials have said the gas fumes end up killing other species that could share dens with rattlesnakes.

Last week, Parks and Wildlife held a public meeting in Sweetwater to discuss the issue.

More than 200 people showed up for that meeting, many of them snake hunters for the World’s Largest Rattlesnake Roundup. They said a ban on gassing would mean the end of the roundup and devastate the economy in Sweetwater.

An email from Texas Parks and Wildlife said they will announce the changes to the meeting schedule Wednesday. They expect to hear the revised proposal at the commissioners meeting in late March.