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John Hendricks of Ixonia encountered a rattlesnake during a hike at Devil's Lake State Park in Baraboo, Wisconsin. John Hendricks, Submitted

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During a family trip to Devil's Lake State Park on July 8, John Hendricks of Ixonia was hiking at the top of the East Bluff Trail when he heard what sounded like running water.

"I thought, 'This is freaking weird. I'm at the top; why is there running water?' " Hendricks said.

Hendricks bent down to look in the grass, and what emerged was a 40-inch rattlesnake.

"It wasn't green," Hendricks said. "I'm familiar with green snakes like garter snakes and grass snakes. I jumped back, and I noticed he was coming out so I started videotaping."

Hendricks was initially about 2 feet away from the snake, but he moved back to about 10 feet when he began taping.

"I didn't know it was a rattlesnake until I saw the rattle when he was completely out of the grass," Hendricks said. "I've been going to Devil's Lake the last 10 years ... They've always told us to watch out for snakes. We've never seen one."

Hendricks' sister put the video on Facebook shortly after their trip; since then the video has amassed 323,000 views.

Wisconsin is home to two venomous rattlesnakes, the timber rattlesnake and Eastern massasauga, according to Ed Culhane, communications specialist for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Culhane confirmed that the snake in the video was a timber rattlesnake.

The timber rattlesnake can be found mostly in the western part of the state, often in cliffs around the Mississippi River, according to the DNR. The Eastern massasauga tends to be found in lowland forests, near rivers and wetlands. 

The Wisconsin DNR lists both snakes as being present in Sauk County, where Devil's Lake is located, although the timber rattlesnake is relatively more common at Devil's Lake

Rattlesnake bites, however, are rare, according to the DNR. In Wisconsin, there is only about one rattlesnake bite recorded every four years, with only two verified deaths since 1900. A dog was bitten on the Steinke basin trail in Devil’s Lake in summer 2000.

Visitors should avoid rattlesnakes if they are spotted and report them to the DNR. They are generally shy and nonaggressive unless harassed or cornered. Both Wisconsin rattlesnakes are protected, meaning it is illegal to kill and collect them. The eastern massasauga is state endangered species and federally threatened species, while the timber rattlesnake is a species of special concern and a protected wild animal. 

More information on treatment of bites can be found at bit.ly/WIrattlesnakebites.

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