Rattlesnake Safety Tips: A Venomous Snake Tutorial

By Musa Masala

Photo by Joshua J. Cotton

In this video, Jules Sylvester of Reptile Rentals shares valuable insight into the three venomous snakes of Southern California. In the 10-minute video, you will get an overview of these snakes, how avoid getting bitten, what to do if you do get bit, and a quick view of the treatment plan at the hospital if you wind up there. These treatment protocols are basically the same for all pit viper envenomations in the United States, so this information is standard nationwide. Every bite is unique, though, so there will be adjustments to treatment for every bite.

Venomous snakes are all very important members of the ecosystem. They are masters at rodent control and they don’t need or seek out human interference. Our best advice is to wear appropriate shoes and clothing when working or traveling through these snakes’ habitats and respect your surroundings by paying attention. These snakes will do everything they can to stay away from you. Unfortunately, we humans tend to be the ones who cause interactions. And please, never pick up any snake. You may get much more than you bargained for.

Musa Masala is dedicated to safe and culturally aware mountain travel. This tutorial is part of their Good Trekker, Safe Climber series. For more information, visit Musa Masala.

Jules Sylvester of Reptile Rentals has worked with over 10,000 venomous snakes, and never been bitten—a good sign! Sylvester is concerned with the safety of the film crews and works within the motion picture industry. Often on late-night TV and in specials on snakes and reptiles, he brought all the snakes and wrangled them for the film Snakes on a Plane! He is the founder of Reptile Rentals.

Video filmed by Vanessa Manlunas; Voiceover by August McLaughlin; Editing by Gabe Harder