BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts is dropping its plan to establish a colony of venomous timber rattlesnakes on an uninhabited island.
The state Fisheries and Wildlife board voted unanimously on Wednesday to suspend the plan indefinitely after residents in the region raised safety concerns.READ MORE: Maura Healey Announces She’s Running For Massachusetts Governor
State officials previously planned to bring some of the endangered snakes to an off-limits island in the Quabbin Reservoir to revive the species. Officials say there are only about 200 of the snakes left in Massachusetts.READ MORE: Snow Moves In For Thursday Morning Commute, Bitter Cold Arrives Friday
The plan faced backlash from critics who worried the snakes would leave the island and attack hikers, fishermen and hunters.
Wildlife officials said the fears were unfounded, but after a series of public hearings the board halted the plan. Instead, the group says it will seek a statewide plan to conserve the species.MORE NEWS: It Happens Here: There's A Lot To Learn At Animal Adventures In Bolton
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