Don’t know what ophidiophobia is? Well that’s a shame, because a lot of people around the world have it. It’s the fear of snakes, and much like Indiana Jones, you might want to stay away from Sweetwater, Texas, indefinitely.
Last week, this Texas town gathered up 5,000 pounds of rattlesnakes—yeah, that sounds like a lot (and it is) with anywhere from 300 to 1,250 snakes gathered together. Don’t worry, they weren’t gathered for long as they were soon killed and used as meat for Sweetwater’s Annual Rattlesnake Roundup.
From the GrindTV article interviewing spokesman Riley Sawyers:
Some might frown on this practice, but Sawyers views the roundup as a management tool to help farmers keep rattlesnakes in check.
“It’s like any hunting,” he said. “It’s needed to control the population. It’s more about conservation than it is extermination.”
In case you’re planning to attend, you might be interested to know the Sweetwater event also features a parade, a Miss Snake Charmer pageant, carnival, flea market, and, if you have the stomach for it, a snake meat-eating contest.
The Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup took place last weekend, but it’s been held annually since 1958, so you can make plans to attend next year. Or not.