Thursday, September 4, 2014

We Finally Met

On an early-evening walk up the lane I chanced to look where I was going for once, and thank God I did because a copperhead snake about 18 inches long (adults measure 24 to 36 inches), lay in my path where it hadn't been just minutes before, and I gave it lots of space -- after greeting it very politely by its Latin name: Agkistrodon contortrix phaeogaster Gloyd, and taking a photo so you'd believe me. This is the third species of venomous snake I've met on the property and the second I've photographed. The day I met the Timber Rattler, around 2001, I was weed-whacking near the creek when I heard a curious noise -- a rattle -- and saw a black-patterned snake as thick as my arm letting me know I was intruding, and that day I weed-whacked no more. I met a Pygmy Rattlesnake on my doorstep last year. Watch where you're walking at dusk. A Missouri man died of a copperhead's bite this past July but he'd actually picked it up to show it to his son. The last Missouri death by copperhead before that was in 1965.

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