January 2015 Featured Herper – Aaron Short

January 2015 Featured Herper

Aaron Short


Western Pygmy Rattlesnake Aaron Short
Aaron’s Lifer Western Pygmy Rattlesnake
Aaron Short

This month we take a look at a young herper from Oklahoma.  At 20 years old Aaron Short and has 3 herping seasons under his belt.  He is a herping force that shouldn’t be ignored.  His photos are amazing as well.  This guy is no joke.  In just 3 Herping seasons, he has managed to find 125 species!  He has located over 100 species who call Oklahoma home.  In addition to Oklahoma, Aaron has done some herping in New Mexico and Arizona.  He even got to do an hour of herping in Louisiana.  Hey, herping is herping!

Aaron has managed to build a substantial Herping resume.

[table caption=”Herping Totals” width=”500″ colwidth=”100|100″ colalign=”left|center”]
Species,Finds,
Salamanders,3
Frogs & Toads,24
Turtles,12
Lizards,38
Snakes,50
[/table]

Aaron has found 45 of the 56 Oklahoma Snake Species!

Aaron says he got into Herping early in the 2012 Herping Season because of his girlfriend, Brittany Wheeler (@bits_of_skittles) and her brother, Killian Wheeler (@brutalis69).

The Unicorn of Oklahoma (Scarlet Snake) Aaron Short
The Unicorn of Oklahoma (Scarlet Snake)
Aaron Short

Aaron has only been taking pictures of his herps this past season (Herping 2014).  You wouldn’t believe it if you took a look at his Instagram account.  It is obvious Aaron has photography talent.  He credits his good friend Adam for the skills he has obtained thus far in his photography.  Be sure to check out Adam’s work on his Instagram @professor_pouncey.

Aaron attributes most of his knowledge about North American Herpetology from extensive studying of the internet, books, his girl friend Brittany and her brother Killian, and the experiences he has had in the field.

I think there is no better way to broaden your knowledge about herps than encountering them in the field. ~ Aaron Short

He feels that the species he knows the best would be Eastern Hog-nosed Snake, Timber Rattlesnakes, Massasauga Rattlesnakes, Copperheads, and Coachwhips.

Speckled Kingsnake (lampropeltis holbrooki) Aaron Short
Speckled Kingsnake (lampropeltis holbrooki)
Aaron Short

When asked about his favorite herp that he is found, Aaron told me about a blacktail rattlesnake he found while in Arizona.  On the radar for the 2015 herping season, Aaron says he will be hoping for a Oklahoma Milk Snake or a Oklahoma mud snake.

Aaron and I talked a few minutes about lifers.  I shared with him my personal story with mud snakes in NC.  Found one just to watch it get hit while I was pulling over and another I found alive just to discover it had fatal injuries from being hit before I found it.  Aaron shared with me his story about what would have been a lifer for him.  The prairie rattlesnake is the only venomous snake left in Oklahoma for him.  He watched one get ran over by a passing car while attempting to stop for the snake.  He described it as a tough blow.  We were able to feel the pain of being so close but too late.

 Aaron is a member of the Oklahoma City Herpetological & Invertebrate Society (OCHIS)

For more from Aaron Short, visit his Instagram @sxblur51 or visit his FaceBook.


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HerpersGuide.com will be selecting one person each month in the year 2015 to feature on our site.  If you know someone you think should be featured please let us know.  Email Phillip at plaxton@HerpersGuide.com with a means of contact and the reason you think they should be featured.