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Steve Tupper

Er, that's not unlike a Massasauga rattlesnake (,1607,7-153-10370_12145_12201-32995--,00.html). The markings and body shape look pretty close.

Not trying to sow panic. They're not aggressive (consistent with the snake's retreat from the camera) and the venom isn't especially toxic. Illinois is toward the western end of its range.

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