Snakes!

Discussion in 'The Dog Run' started by J. Hoffman, Aug 10, 2017.

  1. J. Hoffman

    J. Hoffman Dealer - Purveyor

    I'm not a fan of snakes, my wife is scared to death of them. I can deal with them, she can not. This summer, they are all over the place. I keep finding them in the shop, on our back step, on our sidewalk and lawn. Does anyone have a cure for getting them to go away?
     
  2. Dennis Morland

    Dennis Morland KNIFE MAKER

    Jess: What kind of snakes? Around my house we had several (like a dozen) of garter snakes. My kids and I catch them from time to time and relocate them to an open field/lake about 6 blocks from my house. We have done it for several years and I think it has helped a great deal. I have only seen a few of them this summer.
     
  3. John Wilson

    John Wilson Well-Known Member

    When I was a kid, the old wives tale was to spread Sevens Dust around the perimeter and snakes wouldn't come around. How well does it work? I can't say for sure. The only real cure for snakes I've ever witnessed are cats, unless you want to include shotguns.

    Usually what brings them is a food source. If there is a food source bringing rodents, snakes are sure to follow.
     
  4. Dennis Morland

    Dennis Morland KNIFE MAKER

    All of the snakes next to my home are in a sunken window well. It is about 3-4 feet deep and has a block wall. The snakes hide in, around, and behind that wall. I don't really have a food source (rodents) in the yard. Perhaps bugs. They do have safety and a home behind the wall. And it is warmer than say a hole in the ground.

    Once you get a snake or two, they will start having babies. Then their babies have babies. Next the cousins move in. Now, it is out of control and the lawn mower needs to move faster.

    I am not a fan of snakes, and I do not like to kill them. Relocation was a good alternative for us. But, garter snakes only get about 2 feet long, are not that aggressive, and are not poisonous. So, the kids can put them in a bucket and transport them to the lake front property.
     
  5. John Wilson

    John Wilson Well-Known Member

    Black snakes do seem to breed at an alarming rate. I don't like to kill snakes, either, but if the population is getting out of control then the easy solution is to kill them off. Feral cats get the same way and sometimes the only solution, however unseemly, is to thin the herd.
     
  6. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton Member

    I only kill rattlesnakes and copperheads. Any other snake gets a pass, although any snake will scare the bejeezus out of me if I encounter it unawares.

    Kingsnakes eat rats, mice, bugs and OTHER SNAKES. The more ratsnakes, kingsnakes and bullsnakes you have, the fewer rats, mice and other snakes you will have.

    As John mentioned, cats will do in the mice and rats, causing the snakes (at least the ones that eat rats and mice) to move out of the area. The problem I have with cats is keeping them. The coyotes keep getting any cat that is in the area. Cats will also attack small snakes, such as garters, milks, racers, whips, etc.
     
  7. John Wilson

    John Wilson Well-Known Member

    For sure. Cats are a two-edged sword. They keep the rodents and snakes down, but they also kill everything else like squirrels and rabbits.

    I grew up in southern Virginia, and it was the snakiest place I've ever seen. Snakes were just...everywhere, all the time. Every time you flipped something over or moved something you knocked on it a few times to see if anything would crawl out. When I moved to Florida I expected even more snakes, but it's not even close. It's almost rare to see snakes around here. I supposed it's the abundance of alligators to eat them, I don't know. Of course the snakes are here- you just hardly ever see them.

    I love having a kingsnake around, or even a big ratsnake or racer. They kill or run the other snakes off.
     
  8. C Craft

    C Craft Well-Known Member

    I don't have a problem to much with snakes until I find them right there under my feet! I live in Florida as well and I think the snakes depend upon where you are. When I first moved here we had those hog-nosed snake/spreading adder, on the back of my property. They are hillarous. If confronted he will rare up like a Cobra and flair his head, if that don't work he roll over and play dead. Ater I cleared the woods off behind my house I haven't seen one in years.

    I have seen my share of Eastern Diamondback rattlers and Cottonmouth snakes. You can just about bet anywhere their is water, creeks ponds and rivers around here there are going to Cottonmouths. The Diamondbacks any forested land you are gonna find them. I use to live more north of where I am now and the land behind us was forest land belonging to one of the paper mill companies. My father in law said he had lived there for 29 years and never saw a Diamondback up around his house! They clear cut the forest land behind us for several miles down thru their and for about 3 years after that we were inundated with Diamondbacks. I killed one at my mailbox that was 6'3" minus his head and rattles. I skinned him out and tried to tan the skin but the ants got to it! He had 14 rattles and a head as big as my fist and half of the other fist in witdth. I was going to eat him but my wife said if I put him in her freezer she was leaving me!! :eek:

    Quick story, I use to bow hunt. Around here even in the dead of winter, if it is a warm day you can be guaranteed to see Diamondbacks on the road sunning themselves. I was always aware in the early season and on those warm days to watch for snakes. I started in to an area to hang and new stand to hunt off the next day. So had a stand slung over my sholder, as well as my bow hanging of one shoulder.

    I was walking down a trail and ducked to go under a low hanging limb. So this is where I have to tell you my ears are messed up from working around power tools for years, so I use my other senses acutely when hunting. Any as I ducked the limb I hear what sounds like the ratlle of a rattlesnake, and by the sound it right under me!!
    So I freeze and now I am scanning every inch of the terrain under me for the snake. Finally I decided I had to turn my head slightly and when I did. I hear that soft rattle again. Now I am really about to dirty my britches as I know that snake is there and he getting hotter by the minute. Can't see anything to my right so turn my head to left, and I began to laugh! After standing dead still for what seemed like a eternity, I had found my snake. One of my arrows in the quiver attached to my bow is hung in a tree branch abou the size of a match stick and each movement is pushing thru that feather and giving that ch ch ch sound. It was funny after it was all over but, my legs felt weak when I finally started to move again!!
     
    John Wilson likes this.
  9. Dennis Morland

    Dennis Morland KNIFE MAKER

    Aren't diamondbacks the snake that gives live birth? And the newborn babies are super poisonous? I don't like snakes but poisonous snakes just freak me out!!
     
  10. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton Member

    Yes, both Eastern and Western Diamondbacks are live birth snakes. Eastern diamondback clutches range from 4 to 32, but average out to a dozen or so. Westerns clutch size is 4 to 20, averaging around 8 to 10.

    There is still controversy over whether or not a neonate's venom is stronger than that of an adult. There are 2 camps - 1) it is and 2) it isn't.

    BUT - There's controversy within each camp.

    For the "It Is" camp, some say it is because a neonate has not yet learned "volume control" and injects more venom per bite. Others say it is because a neonate's venom has a larger ratio of neurotoxins to hemotoxins in it's venom compared to an adult.

    For the "It Isn't" camp, one group says neonates haven't learned to do "dry hits" (no venom injected) while adults have learned to control whether or not venom is injected. Another side says it is because a neonate doesn't have a lot of venom in a full shot vs how much an adult COULD inject.

    Having been struck and hit multiple times, thankfully always into a boot upper (who says cowboy boots don't serve a purpose:D?) or into snake leggings, any rattlesnake bit is bad.

    I've killed over 40 rattlers around the farm in the last 3 years. The smallest was "recently hatched" at around 14 inches long. The longest was about 63". Kinda hard to tell full length as some of it vanished when I put a .357 hollow point into it's neck, blowing the head 3 feet from the body.
     
    Dennis Morland likes this.
  11. John Wilson

    John Wilson Well-Known Member

    HAHAHAHA!!! That sounds just like something I'd do!
     
  12. C Craft

    C Craft Well-Known Member

    Here is one the will scare the $^!7 out of you! upload_2017-8-11_14-18-43.jpeg That is a Pygmy Rattler, I have only seen three in the past 40 years I have lived in Florida! None of the three were over a foot, in length and even though I saw them shake there rattle I never heard any of them. All of the three were very dark colored. Two in the woods and one on a recenttly cleared job site. You better hope you see him as you probably will not hear him. If you are deep in the woods you will probably bleed out at the wound site from this little beggar!

    The following is from this link, http://www.247wildlife.com/pygmyrattlesnake.html

    Like other pitvipers, the pigmy rattlesnake is a nocturnal animal. This means that it is usually the most active during the hours after the sun has set at night. Like other rattlesnakes, the pigmy rattlesnake will shake its tail when threatened to ward off potential predators or other dangers. However, because of its very small size for a rattlesnake the tail rattle does not make a very loud noise.

    This from a second link, http://www.247wildlife.com/pygmyrattlesnake.html
    The color patterns that can be found on the Pigmy Rattlesnakes can vary depending on its natural habitat, and these can vary with blotches and uniform patches running down the body which can be of various colors, from black and blue to dark green and various shades of red or brown. These snakes are not the most heavy bodied of snakes, and they will usually grow to between fourteen and twenty-two inches in length, but the largest known examples have been up to thirty inches in length.
    The venom produced by pigmy rattlesnakes causes intense bleeding at the site of the wound, and the pigmy rattlesnake bite is the most common cause of snake envenomation in many areas. In the warmer months a pigmy rattlesnake might spend its days sunning itself on a rock and its nights hunting for its prey.
     
  13. John Wilson

    John Wilson Well-Known Member

    I used to get about one of those each year at my old house. What is scary about them is that they curl up in a knotty ball and look like a pile of dog poop on the ground. You don't even know what it is until you get right on top of it. Those are the meanest little bastards I've ever seen, worse than a cottonmouth. If you put a stick near them they will strike it over and over again and never run away. That's the reason I killed them, because they like to get up in the short grass where the kids played and they won't run away. Like I said, I'm not one for killing snakes, but the risk to my kids and pets was too great. Those gotta go.
     
  14. bladegrinder

    bladegrinder Well-Known Member

    The only snakes I don't want around are the diamondbacks and moccasins. I'm in Florida too and I've killed a lot of diamondbacks, for those that say they have their place...yes they do, just nowhere near me...possibly next to the mash potatoes if it's under 4 feet, bigger ones are tough. moccasins are worse, they'll actually come after you if you p-ss them off.

    The skins are easy to tan, they pull off like a sock...then just scrape off any membrane an soak in a jar for a couple days with a 50-50 mix of glycerin and denatured alcohol, you'll have a perfect tanned skin. the scales should be scraped off or they'll fall of later by themselves making a mess.

    I have property in north Fl. and rattle snakes are the norm but I used to hunt in a place called Otter Creek and you would see rattle snakes almost ever day. that place was REAL Florida hunting, loaded with hogs. one time I was up in my stand and heard something coming up behind me, I thought it was going to be a hog and I looked over to see about a 10' gater just walking thru the woods, just headed to another pond somewhere.

    I'm not sure why but I also keep their fangs, I have a film canister full of them, just cool to show to people that don't know much about rattle snakes I guess.
     
    John Wilson likes this.
  15. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton Member

    I used to keep the rattles, but after I hit 2 gallons of them some years back, I quit keeping them (the rattles, n0t the rattlers :D ).

    A couple of years ago, when I got robbed for the umpteenth time:mad:, the thieves took the bucket of rattles. Why??? Who knows. They also took my kitchen sink. :mad: Yes, they busted out my cabinet and stole my sink, and my claw foot tub, and the water heater, the bathroom sink, the washer, the dryer, the stove, my lawn tractor, all the electric tools they could find, the lawn tractor, chain saw, lawn mower, WaveRunner, golf clubs, antique dishes. They didn't get any knives, swords, bayonets or axes because those were stored in a locked cabinets in a locked warehouse behind a locked gate.

    Don't be a thief if I happen to be on your jury. :mad:
     
  16. C Craft

    C Craft Well-Known Member

    I scouted an area that was just covered up in deer sign, one year! It was like three different trails convergered in one area, to a single trail. Well this looks like a good spot to hang a stand. I found a pine tree I could get my stand in. I use to use those thumb tacks with the reflectors on them to get in and out of a stand before daylight and after dark. So I marked my way out of the area and let it calm down for a few days.
    About three days later we got a front coming in that is gonna drop the temperature by days end. Cloudy and rainy in the morning and the wind would pick-up at nightfall and temp would then drop.
    So the wind is right to hang in that new area. I got in there about an hour or more before daylight. Using a pen light I set up my stand. Now mind you I had to wade thru about a foot of water for about 10' to get to this pine tree I was hanging in. The tree sat right in the middle of a raised island. I got the stand up in the tree and I still had about 30-40 minutes till shooting daylight. So I am sitting in the tree about 18" ft. up and I hear a little splash in the water below the tree.

    I am thinking maybe a coon. So I grabbed my pen light and shined it down the tree into the water where I had heard the sound. There is a Water Moccasin swims up to my boot print on the edge of the dry land. My mind begins to think, Oh shoot, where were you when I waded the water and then took another 5+ minutes it took to set up my climber to climb the tree!!!!!!

    Don't care for Moccasin's at all they will be aggressive. All the experts say that is a false hood that they are aggressive. In my expereinces with them, where most snakes want to go the other way, a Moccasin will come at you if confronted. He does not back down!! I would love to take one of those experts with me in the swamps around here.

    Now Mr. expert, see their is Moccasin, "stand in front of me and you will be OK, remember he is not aggressive"!!

    I would be willing to bet money he, (the Moccasin) is going to come right to where you are standing! Now I don't know if that is aggression or inquisitiveness, but I ain't standing there waiting to find out!!! I have had that happen more than once!!!!
     
  17. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

    Arrow fletching rubbing against a limb sounding like a rattler - now that is funny..... but only AFTER it's cleared up that it's NOT a rattler! I've enjoyed reading all these "snake" tales - better reading about them than being in one :)

    I'm a lot like my Mama, she felt strongly the only good snake was a dead snake - "snake's are evil" was her feeling. Mama would take her long handled hoe and make a good snake of any snake she saw.

    Ken H>
     
  18. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton Member

    For all of us old enough to remember B&W TVs and their manual adjustments, remember the black bar that would move up or down across the screen with moving the Horizontal Hold knob?

    One night back in the early 70s, my grandmother was watching TV when a black bar started moving in from 1 side across the screen. It went all the way across and then started to come across the screen from the upper left corner down to the lower right. The horizontal line went away and a line started coming down from top to the bottom and stopped part way down.

    She got up, went and turned on the overhead light to try to get rid of the weird lines. When she looked at the TV, she saw a HUGE rat snake draped all over the TV.

    She called her brother, who lived about 1/4 mile away to come kill it.

    She said she almost had a heart attack when she saw the snake as she had almost went to the TV without turning on the ceiling light. She absolutely hated snakes and she also had the attitude that the only good snake was a dead snake.
     
  19. C Craft

    C Craft Well-Known Member

    Ken, it was funny after it was all over with but, if someone would have seen me that day I am sure they would have said ther is a crazy man standing in the woods laughing uncontrollably. That was just a release of emotions!!

    My mother in law, was one of those who hated a snake! When the wife and I were first married the subject of snakes came up, after dinner at my in-laws. My father in law says, my wife hates snakes and I have the floor to prove it!

    Now of course I could not leave that one alone. So had to ask, "the floors to prove it"??? He gets up and says follow me. In their living room there was a rug that covered all but about a foot of the beautiful hardwood floors. Now I had wondered before, why would you cover pretty hardword floors but had never asked!

    He walks into the living room moves a chair and spins the couch around part way!! He says, you see when I was building this house, I had just finished these hardwood floors, and I had the windows and the door open that day while they finished drying. Now wheter "he" came in while I was working or perhaps "he" had crawled into the couch and came back in the house with it. A snake appeared the next morning out in front of the couch!

    Suddenly I hear my mother in law from behind me, ( I wasn't aware she had even walked into the room from behind me ), anyway she says, and I saw the snake. She says I was the only one around the kids were in school and he (my father in law) was at work. She said I knew if I didn't kill that snake I knew I could not ever lay down and sleep in this house again. She said, I ran to the front door and grabbed the first thing I saw. It was a hoe!

    At that moment my father in law pulls the rug back and in the middle of the room, there is like 15 or 20 marks, like about 5" in length. She had hacked that snake into a dozen pieces with the hoe! She said, he wouldn't stop moving and, I never even realized what I was doing to the floor until I had to clean up the remains of the snake!!

    My father in law lauged and that is how I have the floor to prove she hates snakes. I looked at my mother in law and says was it poisonous. She shruggs her shoulders and says don't know and don't care! I hate snakes!!!

    We all began to laugh. I forgot to tell you my mother in law tipped the scales at about 300+ lbs. and I just could picture her going to town on this snake and that thought just made me laugh even that much harder!!!!
     

Share This Page