Black Snake Blocking Road

I came upon something black blocking the road yesterday evening while driving down into the hollow.

Unsure of what I was seeing I disembarked the vehicle and proceeded on foot.

A long skinny strip of black reptile. Up close it held up its pretty white chin and studiously ignored me. I know several of the snakes closer to the house, but not this one. I suppose it’s obviously a western rat snake, but it’s so squiggly and skinny that I felt unsure. For years, I’d see a six footer in the bottom of the hollow, but it was a thick, heavy bodied thing. Perhaps this one is just much younger? It never flinched as I stood inches from it nor when I drove towards it and carefully around it.

Where’s the Respect? Where’s the Fear?

Just now in the dimming light, walking to the house with Shrek, I jumped sideways before it even registered in my brain that a copperhead was whipping his body frantically at my feet. I wasn’t the reason for the strange contortions, though. Walking just a bit in front of me and inches from my leg, yellow dog Shrek had rudely stepped on the snake’s head and then continued on his way. Copperheads are generally treated with respect, if not fear and this 2 foot fellow was obviously insulted by the breach of protocol. 

Snakes

This is a small snake that was in our yard under some twigs and wet leaves. It was about 18 inches long and I never did determine what it was. We see snakes fairly often in the hollow – mostly copperheads (have seen dozens), but also ringnecks, speckled kingsnakes, and black snakes.

There is a pair of black snakes that live in the attic of our little shop building. Sometimes they can be seen stretching their long bodies from an opening in the roof of the shop, reaching for a tree to use to climb down to the ground. One of the black snakes is about six feet long and the other about four feet long.