I have had it with these _______ _______ snakes in this _______ _______ office!
So I'm tooling around downstairs a few days ago while Stevie Ray is at school and Christy and Emma are napping, and I hear this sort-of metallic thwacking sound. I wasn't sure where it came from, but it was in a room different from the room I was in - and I was downstairs in the living room.
It sounded a lot like one of the mouse-traps going off. We haven't had mice since winter, so I checked the trap in the kitchen - no mouse. The other traps are upstairs in the walk-in part of the attic (we live in a cape, so the back quarter of the house upstairs is a storage area - kinda nice). My office is the only room used upstairs, and it has the door to the attic in the back corner.
As soon as I entered the office, I saw a two-foot black snake curled up on my window's screen insert. The screen insert had been propped against the wall by the window, but the snake had climbed it and tipped it over against a bookshelf. That was the metallic "thwack" I'd mistaken for a mouse-trap.
I went back downstairs and grabbed some work gloves before returning to catch the snake. I brought him downstairs as quietly as possible (how much fun would it be to bump into a 7-months-pregnant redhead who just woke up from a nap with a 2-foot black snake writhing around my right arm? I didn't want to find out so I was quiet...).
Black snakes are good to have around out in the country. They eat mice and moles and generally keep to themselves. They're not usually poisonous, although there are rural legends (the country version of urban legends) that they have been known to cross-breed with poisonous varieties to produce poisonous black snakes.
(I wasn't in the mood to find out with him wriggling around my arm...)
I have a pretty simple rule about wildlife: Live and let live. If you kill it, you better be planning on skinning it and eating it... unless it is threatening you. We don't hunt for sport on Leonard land. And when we fish, we either eat them or catch and release. We're not animal rights folks - we're just responsible participants in nature's food chain.
That said, showing up inside the house when Christy is pregnant, with our two current children residing here outside the womb and another about to make the transition in a couple months, the snake is a threat. Or rather, was a threat.
My neighbor said he caught one about the same size in his house last week. He caught him and released him in the woods behind both our houses. I'll bet real money it was the same snake.
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