snakes Pittsburgh

bill999(z6 Pa)June 1, 2013

This AM in my suburban yard watched one large (3+ feet) Black Rat Snake lying on another for 5 minutes with little movement. Assume they were mating. Short time later one moved toward compost pile and discovered a dead chipmunk that smelled bad covered with flies. Snake began to swallow it head first while moving deeper into heap of cuttings on pile. I believe it was hiding itself to digest this large meal once he had it down. Soon he was out of sight with only a swarm of disappointed blow flies to mark his position. His/her mate appeared and closely checked what was going on but slithered away likely because first snake had much of the prize down it's throat. Both were healthy snakes, same size. I see them often in the yard where there is a long natural stone wall where they hunt and take cover.

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Very cool, although the mental image of the chipmunk puts my breakfast in a different light. ;)

We have them here too in York County, but I have never been lucky enough to watch snake sex. Hummingbird sex, check. Baltimore Orioles sex (this year), check. Black Rat Snakes, still waiting.

Now that my shrubs are getting bigger, we don't see the amount of snakes we used to. My wife knows where the fairly large No. Water Snakes sunbathe, and slowly approaches the area. Without fail, as she is looking for the snake, and she knows she will likely find one, while she is actively lifting branches of the shrubs (with her walking stick) to get a better look, she sees the snake and screams. I can never figure that out.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2013 at 9:14AM
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I would rather have them (non-venomous) snakes than having rodents killing my plants, but, I get freaked out seeing them without expecting them to be there.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2014 at 4:43AM
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They are beneficial, overall, for rodent control. and, while non-venomous, they WILL bite. there is a very high likelihood of severe infection from it. this is due to small,nearly impossible to clean puncture wounds, and the stuff they eat..

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 7:54PM
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geoforce(z7a SE PA)

They for darn sure will bite. I had one last year get caught in a roll of bird mesh it tried to get through, and got severely bitten on hands getting the dumb thing free. Should have let it stay there and starve maybe.

Took over a month for the bites to completely heal though they were only tiny punctures.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 11:08AM
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You wouldn't catch me picking one up with my hands, even with gloves on. I saved a black racer from my mom's dog a few years ago. I picked it up with a rake, so it was about 5 ft from me. The dog had bloodied it's head up, and it was a bit worn out. I checked the area I put it in a couple hours later and it had left. Remember the "Dirty jobs" show on TV a couple years ago? They had him helping out checking on a native species of (non-venomous) snake in a river, I don't remember the place etc. But the guy on there kept getting bit. The person with him may have gotten bitten 1 or 2 times. You couldn't pay me enough. If they had legs, they wouldn't freak me out that much.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 1:32AM
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