Texas rat snake blues

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by haggardfan1, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

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    I only wish I had written a cool song with this title.

    Sunday afternoon I discovered a small snake in my mower shed. I was moving the second of two ramps I had leaning against the wall. The snake was about waist high on a diagonal stud, not far from where my hand had been. When I moved the ramp, the foot-long-or-so snake fell to the floor and at that point I fled, probably shrieking like a little girl. I told my girlfriend, who for some bizarre reason likes snakes, that there was a copperhead in my shop. We went back out there with a flashlight, and after she had had time to identify it as a rat snake, it exited through a gap onto the ground outside and went under the building, apparently having had enough excitement for the time being. I couldn't have been more excited had it been a twelve-foot king cobra, or more scared.

    Long story short, we're in the process of some landscaping and pressure washing at our house, which requires many trips into and out of the shed. I've always been cautious in regards to snakes, but I didn't think about the possibility of them climbing to a better vantage point from which to attack me. :D

    As we were putting away our pressure washer and other garden tools last night, Ashley says "by the way, the snake is in there, so be warned". Sure enough, she had spotted it, or one like it, before I ever got home, and it was relaxing in an even higher place above one of the shop windows.

    Now, I have some questions.

    First of all, what's the likelihood that the same snake, having been startled (and gently evicted) the day before, would re-enter the same structure and again climb to a similar vantage point, on the same wall?

    Do rat snakes, by any chance, reproduce about this time of year? I'm afraid there may be more than one snake present, all approximately the same size, which may mean there's a bigger one somewhere close by who recently spawned the ones I'm seeing.

    Is there any way of discouraging their presence without hurting them? :rolleyes: Ashley would never forgive me if I killed a non-venomous snake; but if they remain, she may be posting my obituary here after they give me a heart attack. (Note: she is NOT fond enough of snakes to grasp them Jeff Corwin style, and just relocate the damn things for me.) I know that mothballs and all those repellents don't work, and I haven't seen any food source in the shed that I could eliminate. Nor can I effectively make the shed tight enough to be snake-proof.

    Is it legal to burn down a tool shed, within city limits? Or, will my landlady notice the holes made by .38 snakeshot?

    Seriously, if you have any suggestions, please feel free to post them, after thoroughly making fun of my total and irrational fear of snakes. I deserve it.


    "Why did it have to be snakes?" --Indiana Jones, Raiders of The Lost Ark
     
  2. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Doctor of Teleocity

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    Ace Hardware sells snake repellant granules. They seem to work pretty well.
     
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  3. 39martind18

    39martind18 Tele-Afflicted

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    Rat snakes are actually helpful-they eat, among other things, rats- imagine that. That snake was not trying to attack you. Rest assured, you scared the Holy Bejesus out of him, he was just trying to get away from you. At 1 ft long, it was a youngster. At that size his prey is bugs and maybe the occasional frog or lizard. My son encountered you snake's great grandpappy, about 4.5 feet long. When he tried to pick it out of the crotch of a tree about 5 feet off the ground, the snake got all huffy about being handled and bit him. Some soap and water, a little antiseptic and my son was fine. Snake got away, which is all he wanted, anyway.
     
  4. TC6969

    TC6969 Friend of Leo's

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    AKA Mothballs.
     
  5. Pualee

    Pualee Tele-Holic

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    My general opinion... if it climbs, its safe (you are in the US, disregard if you are in Asia or South America).

    Rat snakes are constrictors and will climb. I'll also suggest that if it calls your shed home, it will come back. Also... if you have rat snakes, it is a good thing. They keep the copperheads away.
     
  6. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

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    Years ago, when I owned my first home, about a five-footer got into the bedroom somehow. I would have sold that house CHEAP for a few weeks after that; although I did soon find and eliminate that snake's apparent point of entry.
     
  7. fretWalkr

    fretWalkr Tele-Meister

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    We've got a rat that ate a hole in the front soffet to get into our attic. If I found a rat snake I would give him a name and share the space with him.

    Since you have a young rat snake, it appears his mama was in your vicinity fairly recently. If you do have rodents in the area (his mama appears to think so) he will earn his keep. And he will work cheaper than the pest control guys and repair men.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2020
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  8. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Shoot as many of the snakes as you can find or until you run out of snake shot THEN BURN DOWN THE SHED. IF the girlfriend gives you any lip do the right thing and lie your way out of it.
     
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  9. Steerforth

    Steerforth Friend of Leo's

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    We were having trouble with mice chewing things out in the storage shed.

    One day we were riding down the road and I spotted a big Black Rat Snake. I had Mrs. Steerforth stop the truck, walked over to it and waved my left hand in front of it, and as he watched that, I grabbed him just behind the head with my right hand.

    I jumped in the back of the truck with him and told Mrs. Steerforth to turn around and head home. When we got there, I let him go right by the shed.

    We have not had any further problems with mice in the shed, and I still see the snake now and then, recognizable from his scars and unusually large size. He keeps the local rodent population well under control. I like him.
     
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  10. dkmw

    dkmw Friend of Leo's

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    I definitely think you can get a song out of this:)
     
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  11. Mad Kiwi

    Mad Kiwi Friend of Leo's

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    My 5 year old daughter (who loves making up songs) would call it something like "black snake, poopy pants"

    Which is not quite as cool as your title but a bit more accurate :)

    (you did say we could tease you)......
     
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  12. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

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    :lol::lol::lol:
     
  13. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

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    The thing I don't like is the possibility of picking up something, and finding said snake underneath. Plus it's pretty close quarters in there, the shed is only about 8x12' and there's a fair amount of random stuff in it. The possibility of loading my pants is, therefore, very real! :lol::oops:

    Snakes are supposed to be on the ground out in the yard, that would be much more preferable.
     
  14. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    This guy was in my driveway last week. I ran in the house and got my DSLR, searching for the lens I wanted. I got close enough to him to get a few photographs.
    Screenshot_20200630-183917~2.png
     
  15. Stubee

    Stubee Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    It’ll come back. It’s not a harmful snake at all.

    Maybe some aversion therapy is in order. My neighbor’s wife near my Ontario deer camp is afraid of snakes and though she was pretty alarmed when several Garter snakes fell on her head as she closed the garage door after a day at the office, she lost some of her fear. Maybe your girlfriend can toss baby rat snakes on ya while you nap?

    Just kidding of course. I have a couple friends who are absolutely terrified of even the smallest snake and as I listened to them share snake encounter stories on night I realized it was no small fear. Like one guy said about seeing a little snake: “it ruins your whole day”!
     
  16. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    The snake is in there because there's food in there.

    Get rid of the bugs/roaches and mice, and the snakes will go elsewhere.
     
  17. haggardfan1

    haggardfan1 Friend of Leo's

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    Good grief. Hope she doesn't think of that! :D
     
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  18. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Rat snakes are cool.

    Enjoy !
     
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  19. dkmw

    dkmw Friend of Leo's

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    Well I went out to my shed
    Maybe I was looking for a rake
    I nearly fainted dead
    There was a big ol' Texas snake!

    I got the Texas rat snake blues
    etc
     
  20. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have no problem with snakes that are on the ground, that I can see from a few feet away. But I don't like surprises.
     
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