Thursday, March 6, 2014

A Brush with Danger?

I apologize in advance for the quality of these photos. As you can imagine, I expect National Geographic to offer me a job tomorrow. 

Yesterday, this little guy showed up in our front flower garden under the rose bushes. 

Bear in mind, here is his actual size.

Of course, I panicked. I don't know anything about snakes. So, I texted Daddy a picture of it, and he told me it didn't look poisonous. He also made a really sweet suggestion.

Even though I knew Daddy was probably right, I was still nervous. But why would I trust a man who spent his whole life in the woods? So, I decided to post a picture on facebook because OBVIOUSLY FACEBOOK WOULD KNOW FOR SURE.

I posted this snake photo on facebook asking if anyone knew what it was. Most everyone told me it was a copperhead and I needed to kill it right away. Some suggested it was a rattlesnake. A few outdoorsy men reassured me that it was NOT a poisonous snake and I should just leave it alone because it would kill the bad ones that came around.

It turns out, people are really alarmists when it comes to snakes. Most everyone said I should kill it because they have a strict no-snake policy at their house, but I didn't want to kill it if it was a good snake.  Finally, someone asked a snake rescue person on facebook what it was, and this little guy is a Midland Brown snake. They flatten their heads when they're afraid to appear like a venomous snake, but the most they will do is poop on you if you pick them up. Good to know.

This whole thing has taught me that we are so severely removed from nature, that we as a whole have no clue about what is happening in our own front yards. I honestly thought I was better than that. I worked on a farm for two years, for crying out loud! I know all kinds of stuff about nature and plants, but it turns out I don't know squat about snakes. It's inspired me to find out more about the animals in the area and about native plants as well. Parrie would be proud. Once, she had a king snake living in her basement, and she called it her Granny Snake because it had to be old to be that huge. I saw it once slithering across the path to her garden, and it was such a cool thing to see. In fact, after Parrie passed away, her brother hosted a party in her honor, and Granny Snake attended.  I thought that was the most awesome thing. 

So, I probably won't invite any snakes in my basement, but I'm going to make a conscious effort to be more aware of who the good and bad guys are in my little corner of the world.  I suggest y'all do the same. It's fascinating to think of what could be just under our noses out there. 


  1. I agree! This past fall when we had all the barn spiders everywhere, I was constantly seeing people post pictures to Facebook (Clearly people need to find a new source of information.) freaking out if they were or weren't poisonous. I had one build a web in front of my door so I had to knock it down everytime I walked outside. But I still didn't kill it and eventually it moved its web.

    1. I'm kind of excited knowing he's out there. I was concerned about copperheads because in our neighborhood, a couple of kids got bit by some last summer, but now that I know he's a good guy, I actually feel safer because he will hopefully protect us!


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