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282 Thorpe St, Summerville, SC 29483
Mon-Fri 08:00 AM - 05:00 PM
282 Thorpe St, Summerville, SC 29483
Mon-Fri 08:00 AM - 05:00 PM

electrician in Heat Springs, SC

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A few of our most popular commercial and industrial electrical services include but are not limited to:

  • Parking Lot Light Installation
  • Electrical Safety Inspections
  • Electrical Grounding for Businesses
  • Generator and Motor Insulation Resistance Analysis
  • Electrical Troubleshooting for Businesses
  • Ongoing Maintenance Plans for Vital Electrical Equipment
  • Transformer Installation
  • Circuit Testing for Businesses
  • Preventative Maintenance for Electrical Equipment
  • Electrical Wiring for New Businesses
  • Electrical Service Upgrades
  • Much More

A few of our most popular commercial and industrial electrical services include but are not limited to:

Circuit Breakers

Tripped Circuit Breakers

Your businesses' electrical system will trip when it has too much electricity running through it. These problems are very common in commercial properties and usually stem from one of three culprits: circuit overloads, short circuits, and ground fault surges. Obviously, when your circuits are tripped regularly, your business operations suffer. To help solve your circuit breaker problems, our commercial electricians will come to your location for in-depth troubleshooting. Once we discover the root cause, we'll get to work on repairing your circuit breaker, so you can continue working and serving your customers.

Flickering Lights

Flickering Lights

Like tripped circuit breakers, dimming or flickering lights are among the most common commercial electrical problems in South Carolina. These issues typically stem from poor electrical connections. These poor connections will usually cause sparks, which can start fires and wreak havoc on your commercial building. While dimming lights might seem minor, if you leave this problem to fester, you could be looking at permanent damage to your businesses' electrical systems. Given the danger involved in fixing this problem, it's important that you work with a licensed business electrician like Engineered Electrical Solutions as soon as you're able to.

Dead Power Outlets

Dead Power Outlets

Dead power outlets aren't always dangerous, unlike other recurring commercial electrical issues. They are, however, disruptive to your company's productivity. Dead outlets are common in older commercial buildings and are often caused by circuit overloads. Connecting multiple high-wattage devices and appliances to the same power socket can cause overheating. When the power outlet overheats, it can lead to tripped circuit breakers. In some cases, the live wire catches fire and burns until it is disconnected. For a reliable solution using high-quality switches, sockets, and circuit breakers, it's best to hire a professional business electrician to get the job done right.

Residential Electrician vs. Commercial Electrician in Heat Springs:
What's the Difference?

Finding a real-deal, qualified commercial electrician in South Carolina is harder than you might think. Whether it's due to availability or budget, you might be tempted to hire a residential electrician for your commercial electrical problem. While it's true that great residential electricians can help solve commercial issues in theory, it's always best to hire a business electrician with professional experience.

Unlike their residential colleagues, commercial electricians are licensed to deal with different materials and procedures suited specifically for businesses. Commercial wiring is much more complex than residential, and is strategically installed with maintenance, repair, and changes in mind. Additionally, commercial properties usually use a three-phase power supply, necessitating more schooling, skills, and technical ability to service.

The bottom line? If you're a business owner with commercial electricity problems, it's best to work with a licensed commercial electrician, like you will find at Engineered Electrical Solutions.

Professional and Efficient from
Call to Technician

Shields Painting has been in the business since 1968. In a world where so much has changed, we are proud to uphold the ideals that make us successful: hard, honest work, getting the job done right, and excellent customer service. Providing you with trustworthy, quality work will always take priority over rushing through a project to serve the next customer. That is just not the way we choose to do business.

As professionals dedicated to perfection, we strive to provide a unique painting experience for every customer - one that focuses on their needs and desires instead of our own. Whether you need residential painting for your home or commercial painting for your business, we encourage you to reach out today to speak with our customer service team. Whether you have big ideas about a new paint project or need our expertise and guidance, we look forward to hearing from you soon.

We want to be sure every one of our customers is satisfied, which is why we offer a three-year guaranteed on our labor. If you're in need of an electrician for your home or business, give our office a call and discover the Engineered Electrical Solutions difference.

Physical-therapy-phone-number(843) 420-3029

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Latest News in Heat Springs, SC

SC alligators seemingly disappear this time of year. Where do they go?

Following their increased activity in the later spring months and during summer, alligators seemingly disappear amid the cooler months each year in South Carolina.Why is that? Where do they go?Many warm-blooded animals hibernate during the winter as they endure freezing temperatures. However, given that alligators are cold-blooded reptiles, they undergo a different form of self-preservation.Much like snakes in South Carolina, alligators in the Palmetto State go into a state called brumation.Once the temperatures b...

Following their increased activity in the later spring months and during summer, alligators seemingly disappear amid the cooler months each year in South Carolina.

Why is that? Where do they go?

Many warm-blooded animals hibernate during the winter as they endure freezing temperatures. However, given that alligators are cold-blooded reptiles, they undergo a different form of self-preservation.

Much like snakes in South Carolina, alligators in the Palmetto State go into a state called brumation.

Once the temperatures begin to drop, alligators can no longer receive the heat they need from their environments. So, they cope by conserving their energy.

Brumation is similar to hibernation, but also is different in many ways.

Both are dormant-like states that an animal will undergo.

For reptiles undergoing brumation, during this time, the creature’s metabolic and physiological processes will severely slow down to conserve its energy. Thus, making the alligator quite lethargic, according to the South Carolina Aquarium on alligator brumation.

“Alligators tend to stop feeding when the temperature drops below 70 degrees and become dormant at around 55 degrees Fahrenheit,” as specified by the Cajun Encounters Tour Co.

With hibernation, the warm-blooded animal will deeply sleep until spring and will not eat or drink until it awakens, whereas cold-blooded animals that brumate do not go into a deep sleep and will continue to drink to avoid dehydration. They will not eat during this time, according to PeeDee Wildlife Control Inc.

However unlikely it may be to see an alligator this time of year, it is not impossible.

“On particularly warm days, cold-blooded animals will often have periods of activity where they bask in the sun to absorb the warmth of the sun’s rays, even during brumation. So, it is possible to see alligators and other reptiles sunning themselves during brumation season,” writes PeeDee Wildlife Control Inc.

“Brumation and hibernation both last four to five months, from November until March. During brumation, alligators create mud holes for shelter and warmth and typically only emerge on warm days to bask in the sun,” continued the wildlife control company.

Although this period may extend until March, it has been known that they may begin to again become active during February.

When the alligators emerge during these warmer days, they will absorb what heat they can.

“Alligators have prominent ridges along their backs called scutes, bone plates that act as a heat conductor. The scutes contain blood vessels and as the sun warms the surface of the skin, the blood running through the scutes is warmed and distributed throughout the rest of the body, heating the alligator. When an alligator gets too warm while basking, he will open his mouth to dispel the heat, according to the South Carolina Aquarium.

As menacing as they may look with their mouths open, it isn’t just that they’ve spot a nearby treat, but instead because they are dispelling some of their excess heat.

High Camp: Nayara's Tented Camp In Costa Rica Is A Glamping Dream

From dips in the hot springs to amazing volcanic views, Nayara’s newly expanded Tented Camp nestled in the rainforest of Costa Rica is a luxurious celebration of the simple life.In Costa Rica, “pura vida’’ is more than a mere verbal mantra. It is a complete way of life. Meaning “pure life,” this ethos is woven into everything— from the fresh, organic cuisine to the deep reverence for the natural environment and, of course, all the ways to enjoy the natural world.Both the locals and the ...

From dips in the hot springs to amazing volcanic views, Nayara’s newly expanded Tented Camp nestled in the rainforest of Costa Rica is a luxurious celebration of the simple life.

In Costa Rica, “pura vida’’ is more than a mere verbal mantra. It is a complete way of life. Meaning “pure life,” this ethos is woven into everything— from the fresh, organic cuisine to the deep reverence for the natural environment and, of course, all the ways to enjoy the natural world.

Both the locals and the land glow with this celebration of life—and the newly expanded Nayara Tented Camp is just the spot to soak it all in.

Nestled in Arenal Volcano National Park with awe-inspiring views, Nayara Resorts offers three adjacent sister properties: Nayara Gardens, Nayara Springs and Nayara Tented Camp (as well as other properties in Chile’s Atacama Desert, on Easter Island and now in Panama). The newly refreshed and expanded tented camp now boasts four-bedroom tented residences and two-bedroom tents (perfect for families), along with its stand-alone tents. Th e private two-bedroom, two-bathroom tents are connected by a central terrace, and each offers its own private plunge pool fed by hot springs so you can enjoy a soothing soak after a day of adventure. For larger groups, the two new private residences can sleep eight adults and four small children.

The private two-bedroom, two-bathroom tents are connected by a central terrace, and each offers its own private plunge pool fed by hot springs.

Culinary options abound at the sister properties where you can wander for a bite or cocktail to keep things fresh. Ayla restaurant, led by Israeli chef Yanir Elnasi, also recently debuted at the tented camp offering contemporary Mediterranean food bursting with flavors of the Middle East. The spectacular views of the Arenal Volcano are a perfect complement to a family-style dinner with live, local music.

The residences come with a personal concierge on hand throughout the stay to help plan any activities, reservations or special experiences, including private chefs to come prepare personalized dinners.

Hiking through the rainforest and across hanging bridges in nearby Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park. Floating down the Peñas Blancas River while howler monkeys swing in the dense canopy overhead. Spotting a sloth sleeping on a cecropia tree near your tent. These are just a few of the adventures guests can enjoy—all before indulging in a treatment at the spa or enjoying a hard-earned soak in the series of six pools and hot springs (which range in temperature from refreshing to seriously steamy). Clean air, clean food and good, clean fun? Sign us up for a pura vida session at this elevated camp anytime.

Photography by: ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF NAYARA RESORTS

Growing strawberries in South Carolina during the fall? Here's how farmers are doing it

Dorr Farms in Sumter is just one of several farms that is growing these berries during the fall and spring.SUMTER, S.C. — Rows of blooming strawberries are being picked right beside a pumpkin patch in Sumter.It's because Maynard and Marie Dorr of Dorr Farms have taken on the fall strawberry."We've done it in past years, and the people love the strawberries in the spring, they love the strawberries," Maynard Dorr said. "...

Dorr Farms in Sumter is just one of several farms that is growing these berries during the fall and spring.

SUMTER, S.C. — Rows of blooming strawberries are being picked right beside a pumpkin patch in Sumter.

It's because Maynard and Marie Dorr of Dorr Farms have taken on the fall strawberry.

"We've done it in past years, and the people love the strawberries in the spring, they love the strawberries," Maynard Dorr said. "And, in the fall, you can't find good fresh strawberries so we took a chance."

"It's becoming more popular, it's been around for a while," Zack Snipes with Clemson Extension said. "Typically, a normal strawberry season we plant plants in the fall, they go through a little growing phase, they go through a winter dormant scene, and then they wake up in the spring, and they produce a big heavy crop. And then we pull them out and start all over."

Farmers are able to grow fall strawberries because these are actually a bit different. Typically, spring-producing plants are called June-bearing. But the fall berries are grown from a "day-neutral" plant, which allows the berries to produce with less daylight and cooler temperatures.

"That plant is not sensitive - as sensitive - to daylight and so it can fruit whenever," Snipes said. "And then we have to get plants that have been cold acclimated so, typically, they're grown in Canada or the mountains of North Carolina and they get the cold instead of the light - encourages them to flower and fruit."

It's a berry that Dorr Farms said can be rough to grow due to the weather.

"You have to plant them in early September, you know, you have to watch them with the extreme heat, and then, as it starts to cool down as it has now, every time it goes, you know, gets below freezing, you have to cover them with the frost blanket," Dorr said. "So far, they've done good, they're blooming full of good bright, right berries."

Dorr added that they just started picking them this week.

The Dorrs said they've had a successful season of growing the fall berry, but they are covering the crops up this week as temperatures are expected to drop near or below freezing.

2023 Bass Pro Tour roster is set; Leesburg’s Floyd qualifies

Major League Fishing has announced the roster for the 2023 Bass Pro Tour, the fifth season of professional bass fishing’s most competitive tournament circuit.The field of 80 of the world’s top bass-fishing professionals will compete across seven fisheries during the Bass Pro Tour regular season for a total purse of more than $7.7 million.The 2023 Bass Pro Tour roster includes two-time Bally Bet Angler of the Year (AOY) Jacob Wheeler as well as 2020 AOY Jordan Lee, 2019 AOY Edwin Evers, REDCREST II champion Dustin C...

Major League Fishing has announced the roster for the 2023 Bass Pro Tour, the fifth season of professional bass fishing’s most competitive tournament circuit.

The field of 80 of the world’s top bass-fishing professionals will compete across seven fisheries during the Bass Pro Tour regular season for a total purse of more than $7.7 million.

The 2023 Bass Pro Tour roster includes two-time Bally Bet Angler of the Year (AOY) Jacob Wheeler as well as 2020 AOY Jordan Lee, 2019 AOY Edwin Evers, REDCREST II champion Dustin Connell, two-time AOY runner-up Ott DeFoe, and the most decorated angler in the history of professional bass fishing, Kevin VanDam.

The field represents 22 states plus Japan. Alabama has the most competitors with 16, followed by Tennessee with eight and Arkansas with seven. New to the Bass Pro Tour for 2023 are Matt Becker, Josh Butler, Mitch Crane, John Hunter, Nick LeBrun, Spencer Shuffield and Jacob Wall.

Invitations to compete in the MLF Bass Pro Tour are earned by performance in the previous year’s Bass Pro Tour, overall lifetime BPT average and performance in the previous year’s Tackle Warehouse Invitationals.

The 2023 Bass Pro Tour will kick off Feb. 13-18, with Stage One at the Kissimmee Chain of Lakes in Kissimmee, Fla. The regular season will conclude with the crowning of the Bally Bet Angler of the Year at Stage Seven at Saginaw Bay in Bay City, Mich., Aug. 1-6.

In addition to millions of dollars in cash prizes, the 2023 Bass Pro Tour anglers are vying for big bass and valuable points in hopes of qualifying for the 2024 General Tire Heavy Hitters All-Star event and REDCREST V, the world championship of professional bass fishing.

Each stage of the Bass Pro Tour includes six days of competition using the catch, weigh, immediate-release format, and is broadcast live on the Major League Fishing app, MyOutdoorTV (MOTV), and MajorLeagueFishing.com. Fans can also follow the on-the-water action as it unfolds on the live SCORETRACKER® leaderboard.

The 2023 MLF Bass Pro Tour will air on Discovery Channel beginning in July 2023 and Outdoor Channel in early 2024.

The 80 professional anglers that will compete on the 2023 Bass Pro Tour are: • Casey Ashley, Donalds, S.C. • Adrian Avena, Vineland, N.J. • *Matt Becker, Finleyville, Pa. • Josh Bertrand, Queen Creek, Ariz. • Tommy Biffle, Wagoner, Okla. • Zack Birge, Blanchard, Okla. • Stephen Browning, Hot Springs, Ark. • *Josh Butler, Hayden, Ala. • Brent Chapman, Lake Quivira, Kan. • Luke Clausen, Spokane, Wash. • Dustin Connell, Clanton, Ala. • Brandon Coulter, Knoxville, Tenn. • *Mitch Crane, Columbus, Miss. • Cliff Crochet, Pierre Part, La. • Mark Daniels, Jr., Tuskegee, Ala. • Mark Davis, Mount Ida, Ark. • Ott DeFoe, Blaine, Tenn. • Boyd Duckett, Guntersville, Ala. • David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va. • Dakota Ebare, Brookeland, Texas • Brent Ehrler, Redlands, Calif. • James Elam, Tulsa, Okla. • Edwin Evers, Talala, Okla. • Todd Faircloth, Jasper, Texas • Cole Floyd, Leesburg, Ohio • Shin Fukae, Osaka, Japan • Anthony Gagliardi, Prosperity, S.C. • Roy Hawk, Lake Havasu City, Ariz. • Dylan Hays, Hot Springs, Ark. • Brett Hite, Phoenix, Ariz. • Timmy Horton, Muscle Shoals, Ala. • Randy Howell, Guntersville, Ala. • *John Hunter, Shelbyville, Ky. • Alton Jones, Lorena, Texas • Alton Jones, Jr., Waco, Texas • Kelly Jordon, Flint, Texas • Gary Klein, Mingus, Texas • Jeff Kriet, Ardmore, Okla. • Chris Lane, Guntersville, Fla. • Russ Lane, Prattville, Ala. • Jeremy Lawyer, Sarcoxie, Mo. • *Nick LeBrun, Bossier City, La. • Jordan Lee, Cullman, Ala. • Matt Lee, Cullman, Ala. • Dave Lefebre, Erie, Pa. • Jared Lintner, Arroyo Grande, Calif. • Justin Lucas, Guntersville, Ala. • Cody Meyer, Star, Idaho • Andy Montgomery, Blacksburg, S.C. • Andy Morgan, Dayton, Tenn. • John Murray, Spring City, Tenn. • Britt Myers, Lake Wylie, S.C. • Michael Neal, Dayton, Tenn. • Takahiro Omori, Tokyo, Japan • Cliff Pace, Petal, Miss. • Keith Poche, Pike Road, Ala. • Skeet Reese, Auburn, Calif. • Marty Robinson, Lyman, S.C. • Dean Rojas, Lake Havasu City, Ariz. • Mark Rose, Wynne, Ark. • Fred Roumbanis, Russellville, Ark. • Bradley Roy, Lancaster, Ky. • Ryan Salzman, Huntsville, Ala. • Terry Scroggins, San Mateo, Fla. • Fletcher Shryock, Guntersville, Ala. • *Spencer Shuffield, Hot Springs, Ark. • Gerald Spohrer, Gonzales, La. • Jeff Sprague, Wills Point, Texas • Wesley Strader, Spring City, Tenn. • Scott Suggs, Alexander, Ark. • Randall Tharp, Port St. Joe, Fla. • Bryan Thrift, Shelby, N.C. • Kevin VanDam, Kalamazoo, Mich. • Jonathan VanDam, Kalamazoo, Mich. • Greg Vinson, Wetumpka, Ala. • David Walker, Sevierville, Tenn. • *Jacob Wall, New Hope, Ala. • James Watson, Lampe, Mo. • Jacob Wheeler, Harrison, Tenn. • Jesse Wiggins, Addison, Ala. * Denotes 2023 Bass Pro Tour Rookie.

2023 MLF Bass Pro Tour Schedule:

Feb. 13-18, Stage One at Kissimmee Chain, Kissimmee, Fla., Hosted by the Kissimmee Sports Commission. March 8-12, REDCREST IV at Lake Norman, Charlotte, N.C., Hosted by the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority March 18-23, Stage Two at Lake Cherokee & Douglas Lake, Jefferson County, Tenn., Hosted by the Jefferson County Department of Tourism April 2-7, Stage Three at Lake Murray, Columbia, S.C., Hosted by the Capital City/Lake Murray Country Regional Tourism Board April 24-29, General Tire Heavy Hitters All-Star Event, Monroe, La., Caney Creek Reservoir & Bussey Brake Wildlife Management Area, Hosted by Discover Monroe-West Monroe and the Louisiana Office of Tourism May 16-21, Stage Four at Lake Guntersville, Guntersville, Ala., Hosted by Marshall County Tourism & Sports June 6-11, Stage Five at Lake Cayuga, Union Springs, N.Y., Hosted by the Union Springs/Springport Chamber, Village of Union Springs, and Cayuga County June 24-29,Stage Six at Lake St. Clair, Harrison Township, Mich., Hosted by the Detroit Sports Commission, Macomb County, Michigan, and Lake St. Clair Metro Parks Aug. 1-6, Stage Seven at Saginaw Bay, Bay City, Mich., Hosted by Bay City, Michigan.

For complete details and updated information on Major League Fishing, visit MajorLeagueFishing.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF’s social media outlets at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Secrets of Tibet’s hot-spring snakes revealed

Jia-Tang Li knows firsthand how tough life can be on the Tibetan Plateau. The air at 4500 meters is so thin that just a few steps take one’s breath away. Despite bitter cold, the Sun is intense enough to quickly burn the skin. Yet the small grayish-brown snakes this herpetologist at the Chengdu Institute of Biology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences studies have been thriving in the plateau’s northern reaches for millions of years. The Tibetan hot-spring snake, Thermophis baileyi, keeps from freezing to death by hanging ...

Jia-Tang Li knows firsthand how tough life can be on the Tibetan Plateau. The air at 4500 meters is so thin that just a few steps take one’s breath away. Despite bitter cold, the Sun is intense enough to quickly burn the skin. Yet the small grayish-brown snakes this herpetologist at the Chengdu Institute of Biology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences studies have been thriving in the plateau’s northern reaches for millions of years. The Tibetan hot-spring snake, Thermophis baileyi, keeps from freezing to death by hanging around the region’s geothermal pools, feasting on frogs and small fish living there.

Now, advances in genome sequencing are giving Li and others a more detailed look at how the snake has adapted to its extreme environment. In recent work, his team has pinpointed genetic adaptations that may help the snake find waters that are just warm enough and withstand the low oxygen and intense Sun. Li’s team has also reconstructed the snake’s evolutionary history, work that could guide efforts to save these reptiles as they face ever-greater threats from humans.

“This is a pretty extreme place for snakes to be living,” says Sara Ruane, a herpetologist at the Field Museum. The work “just shows how adaptable snakes are.” Says Alex Pyron, a herpetologist and evolutionary biologist at George Washington University: “For reptiles, we generally assume if it’s too cold, there won’t be any snakes or lizards. Not so fast, says Thermophis!”

Although the Tibetan Plateau has more than 100 species of snakes, T. baileyi is the only one that lives at about 4500 meters. Two other hot-spring snakes, the Sichuan hot-spring snake and the Shangri-La hot-spring snake, live at lower elevations and are less dependent on the hot springs, says Song Huang, a herpetologist at Anhui Normal University. Other snakes, including a pit viper, exist even higher, “but the key difference is that they are predominantly found at lower elevations,” says Anita Malhotra, a herpetologist and molecular ecologist at Bangor University.

For snakes, “The outside temperature is very influential on the body temperature,” says Justin Bernstein, who studies snake evolution at the University of Kansas, Lawrence. To withstand air temperatures that can drop below –20°C, the snakes lurk near the edges of geothermal pools reaching 40°C and hibernate. But the warmth brings challenges of its own. “Being a hot snake at high altitude is physiologically challenging,” says Raymond Huey, a physiological ecologist at the University of Washington, Seattle, because the warmth boosts the snakes’ need for scarce oxygen.

Between 2015 and 2018, Li led teams to the plateau to capture snakes and collect blood or small bits of tissue from the tip of the tail for sequencing studies. Because the snakes are rare and typically active only between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.—if the Sun is out—the researchers could go days without seeing one, Li recalls. Their initial, incomplete genome, published in 2018, revealed mutations in genes that enhance breathing, make red blood cells more efficient, and make the heart beat more powerfully—changes that may help the snakes cope with low oxygen. Some of the same genes have also changed in yaks, pikas, ground tits, and other species that live at high elevations, albeit in different ways, he and his colleagues reported later.

That study also identified genetic changes in response to intense sunlight on the plateau, including modifications to genes whose proteins help repair DNA damaged by ultraviolet radiation. More recent work, reported on 3 September in The International Journal of Molecular Sciences, builds on those findings by showing at least two of those genes—ERCC6 and MSH2—are also altered in a lizard living on the Tibetan Plateau and other high-altitude animals. “There seems to be a very predictable subset of genes … involved in high altitude adaptation,” says Todd Castoe, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Texas, Arlington.

A more complete genome published on 1 August in Innovation shows how the snakes cope with another challenge: finding bathing spots that are comfortable but not too hot. Li’s team compared genes involved in temperature sensing in hot-spring snakes and other organisms, including snakes such as rattlesnakes and pythons that hunt by sensing heat. They found that a gene called TRPA1 is mutated in both the hot-spring and heat-sensing snakes.

TRPA1 encodes an ion channel that opens and closes in response to temperature changes, setting off a cascade of signals that can be relayed to the brain or to other parts of the snake’s body. In rattlesnakes and pythons, changes to TRPA1 lower the activation temperature of the channel, improving the snakes’ ability to detect warm prey. In hot-spring snakes, biochemical tests by Li’s group revealed, different changes to the protein ensure the channel opens up very quickly and completely.

What this means for the snake isn’t yet clear, but Li suspects the changes might help it orient toward warmth. In behavioral experiments reported in the new paper, his group found that given a choice between a cold rock and a warm one, hot-spring snakes chose the warm rock more often and more quickly than did two other snake species that don’t live at high elevations.

“These snakes are probably walking a really fine line between not freezing to death and not boiling,” Castoe points out. The threat of scalding seems to have shaped other genes: Li’s group found heat shock proteins, which repair proteins damaged by heat, have undergone accelerated evolution in the hot-spring snakes.

Climate history has also left a mark on the snakes’ DNA. Li’s team sequenced the genomes of 58 Tibetan hot-spring snakes collected in 15 places spanning about 500 kilometers. DNA differences pointed to three distinct populations that roughly coincide with three geothermal regions across the northern plateau. The pattern is the handiwork of past ice ages, Li and colleagues argue in the 7 September issue of Molecular Ecology. The westernmost group split off from the rest of the species during a major ice age between half and three-quarters of a million years ago; then the central and eastern populations were divided 300,000 years ago when another ice age threw up a new barrier of cold, isolating each group or snakes near its hot springs. “The thermal springs allowed them to get through the ice ages,” Ruane says.

The isolation also led to unique adaptations in each group. For example, several genes for processing selenium and for metabolizing sulfur have evolved rapidly in the western group, possibly to deal with the specific chemistry of hot springs there, Li suggests.

Even though the three groups intermix occasionally, they are unique enough that “I would consider each a species,” says Frank Burbrink, a herpetologist at the American Museum of Natural History. (Li and Ruane aren’t convinced they’re that distinct.) Each, Burbrink thinks, needs to be conserved separately.

Yet populations are declining. “Human activities have seriously affected the survival of Tibetan hot-spring snakes,” says Huang, who collaborated with Li on the Molecular Ecology paper. In some places, construction has destroyed dens where these reptiles spend the winters. In other places, development has ruined wetlands that act as nurseries for newly hatched snakes. In May 2023, Huang and colleagues hope to begin to build artificial snake dens, restoring the wetlands and fencing people out of these sensitive spots.

The snakes, it seems, are exquisitely adapted to harsh nature—but not to the pressures that humans bring.

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