Photo above: Massasauga rattlesnake basking. Photo: WPC field team

WPC Lead Biologist, Jonathan Choquette, has recently published some incredible work alongside researchers A.Mokdad, T.Pitcher, and J.Litzgus! Published in Global Energy and Conservation, this paper, Selection and validation of release sites for conservation translocations of temperate-zone snakes, details some of the important work we have completed in preparation for conducting conservation translocations with eastern massasaugas.

The identification of suitable overwintering sites is an important step in the selection of potential release sites for conservation translocations.  This paper details how overwintering sites were identified based on the presence of a “Life Zone” (the underground space that is above the water table but below the frost line), and how those sites were later validated.

Congratulations to Jonathan Choquette, A.Mokdad, T.Pitcher, and J.Litzgus for this amazing achievement!

Below: Surrogate species eastern gartersnake in artificial hibernacula. Photo: Kathleen Woodhouse

Jonathan Choquette

Lead Biologist – Ojibway Prairie Reptile Recovery Program

Jonathan manages the recovery program for the Ojibway population of the massasauga rattlesnake in Southern Ontario, and as well as other at-risk snakes in the area. Jonathan is a habitat expert, studying both biology and landscape architecture at the University of Guelph. As an academic for many years, Jonathan has published numerous articles about the importance of habitat for reptiles and amphibians.

Jonathan Choquette