Children on Herping Outings. This is a long one.
If you’re thinking of bringing children on herping adventures…Don’t!
Easter Egg hunts are for kids, herping adventures are for adults. On your trip, if all the noise, running around, complaints about who had the hand held first or who “touched me”, allows you to find anything at all, you may run into medically significant (dangerous) species. Assume this will be followed by, in no particular order of importance: I’m tired, I’m cold, I wanna go home, or my favorite, I have to go to the bathroom…AGAIN.
Let’s define child. Merriam says > Child N: a young person especially between infancy and youth. Let’s add in there: any adult still living with his parents with more than 5 comic books or fluent in Klingon, with discernible “XBox” calluses.
In Southern Nevada, we have side winders, speckled rattlesnakes, Mojave green rattlesnakes (most toxic rattle snake in the world) and many others. Gila Monsters are found from time to time as well. These do not mix with children! Children bitten are normally seen as casualties by serious herpers. Darwinists see it as natural selection.
If you insist on bringing children on the trip, follow these guidelines for success.
1 Withhold all fluids for 8 to 12 hours prior to the trip. This is always good advice before surgery or for herping adventures with children. This will ensure bathroom breaks and bouts of vomiting will not exceed 9 during the course of the outing.
2 Bring sensible snacks. Limit sugar and carbs. This will keep the energy and noise level to a tolerable level, but unfortunately will not provide the desired “sugar crash” that all parents look forward too for the ride home. If they do encounter a Twinkie or Pixi Stick, you can always double up on the Ritalin.
3 Only bring children on a herping adventure with other herpers with children. Your single friend studying Taxonomy at Harvard or Texas A & M will lose his or her mind with the kids…if that should occur, remember, snake hooks have points and the desert is a very big place.
4 Most important…if you will be dealing with venomous reptiles, and are bringing more than one child, give the longest hook to your “favorite” or the child with the most potential.
Next up…Herping survival tip Number 5 Skirts.