Snakes of the Good Kind and One Bad Kind

Spring brings many critters to the garden, which includes snakes.  I probably see more snakes in the Spring than any other time. I found a juvenile Rat Snake in the warm stones in the front yard. They eat rodents, lizards or toads, but will climb trees to eat eggs from bird nests.  I can always tell when the birds spot a Rat Snake, as they all gather and scream at it. This snake is not venomous to humans, but could bite and pass disease.

These two Ribbon Snakes have paired up for the season.  The large one has recently had a feeding. I came across her a few days later and got an eyeful of what exactly she likes to eat.  I’m not posting that photo.  These snakes are also called garden or green snakes. They are not venomous and eat garden pests.

And now the snake of the bad kind.  This is a Copperhead and helps by eating bugs and rodents, but is venomous to humans. Most people live after being bit.  This young snake was curled up in my planter. A reminder to look first. I have also found Copperheads to be mostly chill and like to watch whatever I’m doing.

(Sorry about the quality of these photos, as they were snapped quickly with my phone.)

Before I got around to posting this, the young Copperhead (I think it is the same one) decided to visit the back porch.  Naturally, it found a nice corner near the door my husband would be coming through soon. My husband, who is not into nature as much as I am, always has these snake encounters and this is the second time one waited for him at the garage door.

Copperheads have a very distinctive  Hershey Kiss pattern on their skin.

My tip for making snakes move without hurting them is to gently hose them with water or even throwing bowls of water on them.  Unfortunately, this youngster was a bit clueless, as many young are, and came towards me instead of away when I threw water on it.


23 Comments on “Snakes of the Good Kind and One Bad Kind”

  1. Chloris says:

    My goodness, I’d never go out of the house. Great photos, I’d rather look at them from the safety of my chair here

  2. Anonymous says:

    Good or bad I hate snakes period.

  3. Good photos. That youngster’s color really is a copper color.

  4. Eliza Waters says:

    I don’t mind snakes in general, but a venomous one, even if it was pretty, would make me very nervous indeed!

  5. Deb says:

    As long as a snake stays in the woods he’s safe,but if it comes any where near my chicken pen … well, it’s history god or bad because snakes love chicken eggs and peeps. A medium size snake can eat eight peeps in one night..😢

  6. Tina says:

    Eek! Copperheads are the ones that scare me! Those a great shots, and I have to admit that the copperhead is a beauty, but you be careful with those critters around.

  7. I think you have more snakes than I do.. I see black racers and Coach whips..but, I agree there are probably more out there…

  8. shoreacres says:

    I’ll never forget the feeling of stepping on a very large snake of some sort that was coiled beneath grasses in a ditch. I know, I know — don’t go walking around in knee high grass! But I had knee high boots on, and it was early spring, and I think the snake might have been napping in the warmth. I’m not sure which of us moved faster — I think it might have been me.

    The closest encounter I ever had was in Liberia. I was holding the screen door open to sweep floor debris out onto the stoop, and a black mamba decided to make a run into the house. I had no idea you could decapitate a snake with a screen door, but there you are.

  9. I did love my garter snakes in CT, especially enjoyed them peaking out of our old stone walls. However in the South those pesky copperheads I DO NOT like! The garter snake moves away from you, but a copperhead moves lightening quick and bites! My friend was bitten a couple years ago and it required a two night stay in hospital. Another neighbors dog was bitten…miserable but survived. I caught a black racer in bird netting that was placed beneath the active blue bird house…which was the point but I felt miserable when I saw it was a good snake and not a venomous one.

  10. Yikes. That is one too many snakes for me. I rarely see a snake here, I mean maybe once in the 30 years I’ve lived here, and that was only his head peaking up through the deck boards. I will be more careful as I’m replacing the deck this year.
    I have a friend who lives up on Lake Erie, and she was bitten on the heel by a snake a few weeks ago. Not poisonous, but just the same – too close for me. They are creepy things.

    • Most people are not comfortable with them. I live with a lot of wildlife in a residential community near a river dammed up for a lake. Wild animals can come into the area from miles around.

  11. Sheryl says:

    Whew, you have lots of snakes in the area were you live. Thank goodness many of them are not poisonous (though the young copperhead looked a bit alarming).


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