How Beer Will Help Support Struggling Vt. Rattlesnakes

Your next bottle of Vermont craft beer could help save an endangered species.

Brocklebank Craft Brewing of Tunbridge, Vermont has announced it will donate 10 percent of proceeds from its Timber Rattler IPA to the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department.

That money will support ongoing efforts to conserve Vermont's timber rattlesnake population, the department said.

This summer, necn reported on the rare snakes, learning they are at risk of vanishing from Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut, after biologists said they already disappeared from Maine and Rhode Island.

Timber rattlesnakes are listed as an endangered species on the state level, according to the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department. In Vermont, there are only two known places where the snakes live, in Rutland County.

"Our customers are always fascinated to hear that there actually are timber rattlers in Vermont," Anne Linehan of Brocklebank Craft Brewing said in a news release. "Although we're a tiny new brewery, we do hope to help raise awareness of this issue."

State wildlife biologists in Vermont said the beer maker's gift should not just help conservation efforts, but also send a message of greater acceptance of rattlesnakes, which eat rodents, including animals that carry Lyme disease.

"Gestures like this go a long way towards gaining wider acceptance of rattlesnakes as an important and necessary part of Vermont's ecosystem," biologist Doug Blodgett of the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department said in a written statement announcing the brewery's gift.

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