Published: Dec 11, 2013 7:50 AM EST

HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) - A south Florida biologist is recovering after being bitten by a rattlesnake as he cleaned its cage.
    
Joe Wasilewski spent eight days in a Homestead hospital's intensive care unit after the Nov. 20 bite from a 4-foot-long Eastern diamondback rattlesnake.
    
Wasilewski tells The Miami Herald (http://hrld.us/19gZDXP ) that he's been bitten by cobras, cottonmouths and other rattlesnakes, but this was the worst bite yet. He says it's been a tough recovery and he's "just starting to feel normal now."
    
Wasilewski's son Nick also is a trained snake handler and was with him when he was bitten. Nick Wasilewski called 911, and Miami-Dade Fire Rescue's Venom One unit took his father to the hospital.
    
The biologist says he'll be donating the snake that bit him to a venom research lab in Kissimmee.
    
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Information from: The Miami Herald, http://www.herald.com

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