Chicken Snakes

31 March 2008
The joys of living in the country! Yesterday, Tristen found a baby chicken snake in Dan's minnow trap. The trap was not in the water at the time, but sitting on the deck. I don't think we have to worry about Tristen ever playing with any sort of snake, as he ran off screaming like a crazy man! Anyway, we weren't sure at first what kind of snake it was. It was very easily agitated and would strike at pretty much anything. It also shook the end of it's tail like a rattle snake, but had no rattle. After careful research on the Internet and talking with folks who know about such things, we determined it was a chicken snake, also known as a rat snake. They are apparently quite ill tempered, but harmless. They are actually part of God's plan for pest control, eating small rodents. One website we ran across suggested letting large chicken snakes loose in your attic if you had a rodent problem. I don't think we'll be doing that any time soon, but we did let this little guy go in the side yard. It was a good experience for us all. The kids now know to be more aware and cautious outside. I also needed the wake up call; I'm awful about taking Dixie out in the middle of the night or early morning in flimsy slippers and pretty much paying no attention to our surroundings. If a chicken snake can get that close, so can a rattler and I am not huge on the idea of coming across one of those.

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