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 A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!

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The House of Ainsley
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PostSubject: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Mon May 09, 2011 8:32 am

Hey, does anyone here know what kind of snake this is? Because I just caught it out in my henhouse.









I heard one of my chickens yelling while I was getting out of my car and going inside my house. And I'm glad that I grabbed a flashlight and went to investigate, because I caught this slithery bastard curled up inside one of the nesting boxes, where Blackie had apparently been sitting on a clutch of eggs before the snake showed up and scared her out of the nest. So I ran back inside, grabbed my big combat knife and a pair of salad tongs (since even a nonvenomous snake of that size can leave a pretty nasty bite) and took care of business.

I figured I'd spare you guys the decapitation itself. But suffice it to say that this snake was surprisingly hard to kill, even after a few good chops with that big knife there. That big gash across its head didn't do anything but stun it for half a minute or so. And that damned snake was drooling egg white-and-yolk mix the whole time, so apparently I didn't get there in time to save all of my eggs, alas.

I mean, you guys have seen those photos of my henhouse, right?



The snake was in the bottom row, third nesting box from the left. That nesting box assembly is a good 2 1/2 or 3 feet off the ground, and there's nothing underneath it where the snake could have climbed up. That was the whole point of elevating the nesting boxes in the first place: to keep snakes and other non-flying critters out of the nests. So how the heck did that snake get up there?

So...does anyone know what kind of snake this is? I'll be looking it up in Google Images, but if anyone can beat me to it, I'd appreciate it. I don't think this snake was what killed Pygmy (one of my two-month-old pullets), since Pygmy was ripped to pieces like housecats or raccoons typically kill chickens. But you never can tell. Neutral
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Taljor
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 10, 2011 1:27 am

corn snake is red in color. this might be a rat snake. if you still have it, take it to a vet or even fish and game. i'm sure they can identify it
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Taljor
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 10, 2011 1:28 am

did it eat any eggs?
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S.E.A.M.U.S
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 10, 2011 1:58 am

since it was drooling yolk i'm guessing yes
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The House of Ainsley
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 10, 2011 6:26 am

I was just coming back to confirm that it's a Texas Rat Snake.

http://herpindiego.com/TexasRatSnake.html

http://www.kingsnake.com/stha/stha-home-page.htm

It has the same patterns and coloration, it eats eggs and it's an excellent climber. And yes, it has little tiny teeth which won't really do much to you, as I found out when one of those teeth pricked the meat of my thumb while I was picking up the head and lobbing it out into our field, in a little feat of post-mortem revenge. I just sprayed the little tiny wound with rubbing alcohol and went about my business. Cool

Well, that was educational, wasn't it? Wink

All in all, only one egg was left for me to collect by the time I caught up with that snake. It makes me wonder about all those other times I've gone to collect the eggs at the end of the day and came up with one egg, two eggs or even nothing. How many of those eggless evenings were the results of a Texas rat snake coming to visit my henhouse?
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Taljor
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 10, 2011 11:33 pm

probably alot. you can now inspect the hen house for any holes or other access points that other snakes may have used or still maybe using.
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 10, 2011 11:34 pm

S.E.A.M.U.S wrote:
since it was drooling yolk i'm guessing yes

kinda hard to determine if that was egg or just its insides.
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The House of Ainsley
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Wed May 11, 2011 7:23 am

Well, if you've ever seen scrambled eggs before they're done cooking, that's pretty much what was coming out of this snake's mouth. He was doing a pretty good job of keeping it down until I grabbed him with the salad tongs and squeezed hard to keep a grip on him. Apparently the eggshells were still inside the snake somewhere, because snakes like to unhinge their jaws, swallow eggs whole, crunch the shells, sap whatever's inside the egg and regurgitate the crushed, empty shells. It's necessary for the snake to crush the eggshells because rat snakes have those little rows of teeth that curve inward, so once the snake has an egg or a mouse in its mouth, it's not coming back out in one piece.

That's why I'm going back to setting ceramic eggs on the floor of my henhouse. You put some ceramic eggs in a nest, you let the hens sit on them for a few days just to give the fake eggs that "chicken smell" and fool the snake, the snake swallows the fake egg and tries to crush it but fails; eggshells are one thing, a quarter-inch of ceramic is another. So now you have a snake with a ceramic egg stuck inside its gullet, and it can't eat anymore of your eggs.

If you're lucky, you can retrieve your ceramic egg after the snake starves to death. Otherwise, well, ceramic eggs only cost a dollar apiece...no big loss if the snake crawls into a storm drain and you never see your fake egg again.

So I'll probably get a few more ceramic eggs and seed a small pile of them in every corner of the henhouse. And because snakes are colorblind, the ones I already have are purple and green, and I can get some more outlandish colors just so I don't collect my fake eggs by mistake; my first ceramic egg was brown, and I ended up having to mark a couple of black X's on it after it ended up in my egg basket once or twice. Fake eggs can be pretty convincing; they weigh the same as real eggs, you can paint them the same colors as real eggs and if you're not candling your eggs or paying enough attention to feel the "slosh" inside your eggs while you're picking them up...well, if a ceramic egg can fool a human every now and then, what chance does a snake have?

And yes, there's a gap in the far left corner of my henhouse where the two sheet metal walls meet. I've been meaning to fix that. Embarassed
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Wed May 11, 2011 7:06 pm

IF THE SNAKES ARE GONNA EAT YOUR CHOOKS, WHEN THEY DIE YOU SHOULD JUST EAT THEM IN RETALIATION AAAHHH ALL CAPS DAMNITT!!!
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Thu May 12, 2011 6:02 pm

But what if eating snakes gives you AIDS? Sad
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Fri May 13, 2011 5:32 am

ya know who would eat snake? Corwin would eat snakes.
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Sat May 14, 2011 6:24 pm

I've had snake before Smile It was... interesting. Don't ask what it was, i was a kid. Literally my only memory was was, "omg, i'm eating snake!". lol

I've also had emu, crocodile, kangaroo and giant turtle.

I'm glad your snake didn't do too much damage though. And love the combat knife Smile

Oh, would you believe it? New Zealand has no snakes.

So when Shadow came to live here, he had, like, no clue! I was speechless. Its such common knowledge, what to do, how to identify them, etc... and he didn't have a clue. It was astonishing! LOL

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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Wed May 25, 2011 8:46 am

Wraith wrote:
I've had snake before Smile It was... interesting. Don't ask what it was, i was a kid. Literally my only memory was was, "omg, i'm eating snake!". lol

I've also had emu, crocodile, kangaroo and giant turtle.
Wraith: Eater of many animals. Very Happy

Wraith wrote:
I'm glad your snake didn't do too much damage though. And love the combat knife Smile
I love the combat knife too! It's more like a short sword or a machete than a knife. It's just that big. It only cost about $40 at First Monday, too! Smile

Wraith wrote:
Oh, would you believe it? New Zealand has no snakes.
I'm sure that's a New Zealand joke waiting to happen. Or do Australians and New Zealanders still make fun of each other?

Wraith wrote:
So when Shadow came to live here, he had, like, no clue! I was speechless. Its such common knowledge, what to do, how to identify them, etc... and he didn't have a clue. It was astonishing! LOL
So you came from Thailand, Thailand has snakes and you know all about snakes. Can I therefore assume that Shadow came from New Zealand? Laughing



He also needs to stop playing hookie on us and come back. Razz

Also, speaking of Thailand, I'm still an admin and a DM for a Modern-Era Neverwinter Nights server with a Zombie Apocalypse theme. And I just created nine new types of zombies for the server, and I call them "Dojo Zombies" because they're all martial artists from nine different styles, with the premise being that they tried to fight the zombies but failed, got bitten and succumbed to the zombie virus, so now we have a bunch of martial artist zombies roaming around. And I had to hit the books and read up on Aikido, Kung Fu, Capoeira, Karate, Judo, Wrestling, Kickboxing, Shinto Ryu and Muay Thai in order to do the styles justice (and to write some good descriptions for both the zombies and their uniforms, since player-characters can find these martial arts uniforms and wear them too). I trained in Shotokan Karate back in the Air Force, so I didn't have to research Karate very much. And I can still kick pretty hard. Cool



That's my Nak Muay zombie, third from the right. I even remembered the circlets on the upper arms to denote his rank.

Isn't he cute? Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Thu May 26, 2011 2:28 pm

Yeah, I was born in Thailand, but I'm basically an Aussie through and through.

Shadow's from New Zealand Smile He came here to live with me Smile Smile

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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Tue May 31, 2011 8:46 am

Yay, I called Shadow's origin! Very Happy

So what do we have to do to bring Shadow back here? Kick off a new X-Rated forum? Razz
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PostSubject: Re: A Snake, a Snake! Oh, It's a Snake!   Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:32 pm

LOL, I would like to think that he gets enough X-rated stuff from me... but yeah, lets not go there! Razz


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