Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Black Snakes in the Wood Pile

Today I had a bit of rearranging of Mom's wood pile to do. She's tried sorting, a pretty good work out for a 73 year old, but it wasn't working for purposes of mowing and keeping the yard neat. Besides, she can't light a fire anymore and shouldn't be. One of the piles had an old tarp over it and when I pulled it back... Old Mr. Noshoulders was curled up in the semi-warmth beneath the dark tarp. The day was still cold enough that he was slow but I was not about to hurt an ally in the war on field mice and crickets. I let him go to the bottom of the pile only to uncover a second one. Great fun, I got a long rod and picked them up and moved them to a safe place. Yes, I got photos, but on film... so I'll have to wait until I get it developed and saved on CD to post here.

These are not poisonous snakes but the Black Rat Snake. I was never in any danger as they were slow due to the cold temps today. Even though I handled them, wearing gloves due to the wood I was also handling, I used a stick as this protected both of us. These snakes are incrediblely beneficial to the homeowner, removing/preventing over-populations of rats, field mice, gophers, even crickets and other snakes. These particular specimens were both in excellent health and over 4 feet in length (more than 120cm).

No comments: