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Picture of pulicords
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My wife and I moved to Scottsdale last year from California and we've had quite a few encounters with the local wildlife. Yesterday, I definitely had a "Bucket-List" moment, while hiking at nearly 4600 feet elevation in 60ish degree temps: My first meeting with a Gila Monster!!! I've been hoping to see one of these for some time, but was surprised when it actually occurred. I nearly stepped on this guy and he was as shocked as I was since he reared back, opened his mouth and gave me a very audible warning hiss!!!







I have neighbors that have lived in this area for years and never seen one of these venomous lizards (the only species with venom in North American and the largest lizard here), so I count myself lucky. Hopefully, I'll see more of them, but there is a bit of luck involved as Gila Monsters spend most of their life underground and may only be out of their burrows for as few as three weeks of the year.


"I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."
 
Posts: 8721 | Location: The Free State of Arizona | Registered: June 13, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of az4783054
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You're lucky to have captured the moment. I'm a native and never seen one in the wild. I can count on one hand how many rattlesnakes I've seen and I've worked all over the state. The Gila Monster really blends into the terrain.


I know a little about a lot of things, but I don't know everything. I'm in the minority these days.
 
Posts: 9440 | Location: Somewhere north of a hot humid hell in the summer. | Registered: January 09, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of pulicords
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quote:
Originally posted by az4783054:
You're lucky to have captured the moment. I'm a native and never seen one in the wild. I can count on one hand how many rattlesnakes I've seen and I've worked all over the state. The Gila Monster really blends into the terrain.


This guy sure blended in! We've got lots of snakes around our development. I've seen and photographed California Kingsnakes, Long-nosed Snakes, and some really BIG Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes. Everything seems to be coming out with the milder weather and I'm definitely keeping my eyes open.


"I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."
 
Posts: 8721 | Location: The Free State of Arizona | Registered: June 13, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by pulicords:
My wife and I moved to Scottsdale last year from California and we've had quite a few encounters with the local wildlife. Yesterday, I definitely had a "Bucket-List" moment, while hiking at nearly 4600 feet elevation in 60ish degree temps: My first meeting with a Gila Monster!!! I've been hoping to see one of these for some time, but was surprised when it actually occurred. I nearly stepped on this guy and he was as shocked as I was since he reared back, opened his mouth and gave me a very audible warning hiss!!!







I have neighbors that have lived in this area for years and never seen one of these venomous lizards (the only species with venom in North American and the largest lizard here), so I count myself lucky. Hopefully, I'll see more of them, but there is a bit of luck involved as Gila Monsters spend most of their life underground and may only be out of their burrows for as few as three weeks of the year.


Be advised, that slow ugly critter is protected by state law.


*********
"Never have sympathy for insurance companies...the sons of bitches don't deserve it." - Attorney friend.
 
Posts: 6947 | Location: Arizona | Registered: August 17, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by GWbiker:
Be advised, that slow ugly critter is protected by state law.


Thanks, I'm well aware of it and don't handle venomous reptiles of any kind as a general rule.


"I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."
 
Posts: 8721 | Location: The Free State of Arizona | Registered: June 13, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I've been here 17 years and have yet to run across a Gila Monster. However, when you do, keep your eyes open. Many, many local residents/hikers have told me they travel in pairs, though not usually side by side.



all your sig are belong to us
 
Posts: 9103 | Location: South Congress AZ | Registered: May 27, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Ugly Bag of
Mostly Water
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I was here about two years when I saw my first Gila Monster. I worked for Schwans, and my delivery routes were on and off dirt roads in the desert near Tucson.

It is pretty cool to see them!



Endowment Life Member, NRA • Member, Arizona Citizens Defense League
 
Posts: 2305 | Location: Tucson AZ | Registered: March 25, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
A man's got to know
his limitations
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Whoa! That guy has a nice camo job.



"But, as luck would have it, he stood up. He caught that chunk of lead." Gunnery Sergeant Carlos Hathcock
 
Posts: 8306 | Registered: March 23, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
No, not like
Bill Clinton
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Godzirra!


*********************
“I owe my success to having listened respectfully to the very best advice, and then going away and doing the exact opposite.”
 
Posts: 2033 | Location: GA | Registered: September 23, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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7 years in Phoenix /mesa never saw one,

heck we only saw a diamond back once,





Safety, Situational Awareness and proficiency.



Neck Ties, Hats and ammo brass, Never ,ever touch'em w/o asking first
 
Posts: 48764 | Location: Henry County , Il | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Legalize the Constitution
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Cool. Right up there with Harris hawks as my favorite desert animals.


__________________________________________________________
When you’re happy, you enjoy the music.

When you’re sad, you understand the lyrics.
- George Jones
 
Posts: 9190 | Location: Wyoming | Registered: January 10, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by TMats:
Cool. Right up there with Harris hawks as my favorite desert animals.

We get the Harris hawks around here every winter. They are a very majestic hawk, and always in groups of 3 or more. I understand they are the only raptor that hunts using typical pack hunting techniques (using one as a decoy, or running the prey to ground, or attacking from the periphery from different directions, etc).



all your sig are belong to us
 
Posts: 9103 | Location: South Congress AZ | Registered: May 27, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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What great camouflage. I've lived on the edge of the Florida Everglades now all my life, and in all these years of exploring and trampling thru the woods I've hardly seen a handful of snakes. That doesn't mean they're not around, but hardly seen any. I've seen a few moccasin swimming in the canals and under a barrel a pigmy rattler once but thats it. They can be unbelievably stealthy.

Great catch pullicords!


Regards, Will G.
 
Posts: 8523 | Location: 140 mi to Margaritaville, FL | Registered: January 02, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Truth Wins
Picture of Micropterus
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Now that's cool. Good for you!
 
Posts: 3042 | Location: Southeast Virginia | Registered: January 03, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Legalize the Constitution
Picture of TMats
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quote:
Originally posted by henryaz:
quote:
Originally posted by TMats:
Cool. Right up there with Harris hawks as my favorite desert animals.

We get the Harris hawks around here every winter. They are a very majestic hawk, and always in groups of 3 or more. I understand they are the only raptor that hunts using typical pack hunting techniques (using one as a decoy, or running the prey to ground, or attacking from the periphery from different directions, etc).

Honorable mention to sidewinders. Only saw a couple of those, but they’re sure neat to see.

and Coues deer


__________________________________________________________
When you’re happy, you enjoy the music.

When you’re sad, you understand the lyrics.
- George Jones
 
Posts: 9190 | Location: Wyoming | Registered: January 10, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Pulli, personally, I think you're a great guy. I enjoy your posts, and insight on things. You're probably a hoot to have a few beers with!

But under NO CIRCUMSTANCES, am I ever going on a walk with you. Anywhere. You always seem to run into stuff that is just gonna mess your day all up!

Snakes, spiders, some "super mega wasp" with a pike hanging out its ass instead of a stinger...

Yeah, man, I'm going to have to take a pass on going out for a walk with you.

Wink


_____________________________________________________________________

"When its time to shoot, shoot. Dont talk!"

“What the government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms and killing people. It’s not good at much else.” —Author Tom Clancy
 
Posts: 5879 | Location: Attempting to keep the noise down around Midway Airport | Registered: February 14, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of pulicords
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quote:
Originally posted by CPD SIG:
Pulli, personally, I think you're a great guy. I enjoy your posts, and insight on things. You're probably a hoot to have a few beers with!

But under NO CIRCUMSTANCES, am I ever going on a walk with you. Anywhere. You always seem to run into stuff that is just gonna mess your day all up!

Snakes, spiders, some "super mega wasp" with a pike hanging out its ass instead of a stinger...

Yeah, man, I'm going to have to take a pass on going out for a walk with you.

Wink


LOL! What can I say? My family moved me out west before I was a year old, but I was born in Chicago. I guess I've got an inherent need to find drama! Wink


"I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."
 
Posts: 8721 | Location: The Free State of Arizona | Registered: June 13, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Lived in az all my life, and just moved to Idaho two years ago. I couldn't count how many time I been hiking and almost stepped on snakes. Lol
 
Posts: 10 | Registered: May 14, 2019Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Reminds me of 1968 Fort Sam Huston in San Antonio. I was in basic training and for some reason, they took us out in the boonies and dropped us off individually. After a while, I hear this rustling behind a bush. Fearing a rattler or something worse, I cautiously peer behind the bush and there sits an armadillo. Quite an experience for a city boy.
 
Posts: 1946 | Location: Central Virginia | Registered: July 20, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
sick puppy
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I want to see one, too. Ive always thought they were cool, and now they're Utah's state reptile.



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While you may be able to get away with bottom shelf whiskey, stay the hell away from bottom shelf tequila. - FishOn
 
Posts: 7365 | Location: Alpine, Ut | Registered: February 17, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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