Buck ,I'm old enough to remember when the NYDEC had people who actually knew something about the environment and spent time in in the woods .In the late '60s they [and other states too] began to hire only the tree huggers who never went into the woods and never learned how the woods functioned .I could tell you many stories about rattlesnakes and the bizarre ideas of the DEC. I don't bother with snakes but if you have a bunch of rattlers around your house along with little kids you might have a different idea when the DEC says you'll go to jail if you touch them [screw your kids].
And copperheads ? The DEC 'expert' said they are extinct ! Our DEC magazine then was innudated with letters inviting the expert to come to their home to see all the copperheads !
And Watson , bring your revolver !