Pygmy at the Mailbox

This little fellow was at the mailbox yesterday evening. He never seemed overly concerned about me, though he did coil up and shake his tail vigorously for a few moments. He was only about twelve inches long, so probably not even a full grown pygmy rattlesnake. Made my day to see him.

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.

Copperhead and Blue-Tailed Skink

When we arrived home, this pretty little copperhead was placidly soaking in the sun. Our movement woke it up.

It was only when the copperhead moved that I realized a blue-tailed skink was only inches away. By the time I grabbed my phone, the skink had nearly escaped off the porch.

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. 


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.