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Name that snake

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Tim Frazier

It's amazing to me how some very competent woodsmen are terrified of snakes.  A lot of it is socialization.  I was in a back swamp in Louisiana with a really great guide and I reached down in the swamp and grabbed a water snake to compare it to our Northern Water Snakes in Ohio.  The guide about died as I assured her I knew the difference between a Moccasin and a Water Snake!  Then she calmed down and was fascinated by it.  So many people are taught to just observe wild life and not interact.  I get it, but it was just different for me growing up with a dad who taught Zoology. 

 

 

snake.jpg

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Curt

I think the first one is Improved cylinder, the second may be modified or improved modified.

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Speaks
30 minutes ago, Curt said:

I think the first one is Improved cylinder, the second may be modified or improved modified.

 

This would be my first thought :) 

 

I would not say I am terrified of snakes, just dont particularly want to be anywhere near them. At my cabin in WI they like to get inside my quads and sleep there. Before riding I take them out of the barn and watch the snakes fall out while they sit there and idle...... Always a little exciting when one comes from under the seat as I am tearing down the road....

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quailguy

Blue racer and eastern hognose snakes. 

Where did you find them?

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SelbyLowndes

Bet you didn't know that hognose snake (spreading adder) was venomous.  Yep, their main food is toads, and they have fangs in the rear of their mouth and poison to kill the toad they're swallowing.  I am not a herpetologist, but I do often stay in Holiday Inns...(Sorry)...SelbyLowndes

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quailguy
57 minutes ago, Tim Frazier said:

It's amazing to me how some very competent woodsmen are terrified of snakes.  A lot of it is socialization.  I was in a back swamp in Louisiana with a really great guide and I reached down in the swamp and grabbed a water snake to compare it to our Northern Water Snakes in Ohio.  The guide about died as I assured her I knew the difference between a Moccasin and a Water Snake!  Then she calmed down and was fascinated by it.  So many people are taught to just observe wild life and not interact.  I get it, but it was just different for me growing up with a dad who taught Zoology. 

 

 

snake.jpg

Yeah, you are correct. IMHO, most water snakes have an evil temper and tend to be bite first and ask questions later type snakes. I never pick ‘em up unless I have a snake stick or am wearing good leather gloves. 

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Tim Frazier
2 minutes ago, quailguy said:

Yeah, you are correct. IMHO, most water snakes have an evil temper and tend to be bite first and ask questions later type snakes. I never pick ‘em up unless I have a snake stick or am wearing good leather gloves. 

They are some mean mothers!  I grabbed one over 4' long in Virginia when it had an 18" catfish in it's mouth!  That sucker was as big around as my wrist and wanted to kill me!  Probably the meanest snake I've had in my hands!

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Brad Eden

I caught a couple eastern hognose when a kid living in MA. They were rare though. The ones I caught didn't have that type of coloration or as distinct a pattern.

 

Anyhow. True story(s), which Ive written about before. When I was 12 years old, (almost 50 years ago) on my birthday, which is why I remember the timing, I caught what at the time was the largest Northern water snake recorded in MA, maybe New England, can't remember. It was huge, close to 4' long I think, and thick as a forearm. I had my picture taken and it was printed in the local newspaper etc. We lived down the street from an Audubon Sanctuary with ponds etc., which is where a I caught it. Back then they were thought to kill too many ducklings and goselings along with snapping turtles, so the Audubon director paid me and a friend 25 cents for every snake or snapper we caught. They kept them on display and I don't know what eventually happened to them, but probably not pretty. I was bitten a few times by water snakes. They have very small almost sand paper type teeth. It caused abrasions but nothing egregious. 

 

I also bought a red-tailed or common Boa Constrictor when I was in my late teens. "Isaac" was 16" long and grew to over 6' before I sold him some years later. He traveled with me to college at UMass Amherst and I hid him in my dorm room. There was a line down the hall on every feeding day. He ate live mice and eventually small rabbits and dead rats that I bought at the pet store. Dead rats because they can injure a snake before being swallowed.  And you have to keep buying bigger Aquarium type cages as they grow. After college with jobs and moving around I decided he was too much to deal with so I sold him. He was never aggressive, very docile actually.

 

Snakes are fascinating, but again I've never had to deal with poisonous snakes. 

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Tim Frazier

To me snakes are like mushrooms.  I only mess with what I absolutely know and if I have a question, I just leave it alone.

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BlacknTan
11 minutes ago, Tim Frazier said:

To me snakes are like mushrooms.  I only mess with what I absolutely know and if I have a question, I just leave it alone.

 

For me.. that sounds like good advice!

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quailguy
1 minute ago, Tim Frazier said:

They are some mean mothers!  I grabbed one over 4' long in Virginia when it had an 18" catfish in it's mouth!  That sucker was as big around as my wrist and wanted to kill me!  Probably the meanest snake I've had in my hands!

Back when I was a late teenager I collected snakes for the Houston Zoo. I had found a huge water snake, can’t remember the exact species, that I took to the Reptile House director. he looked at the collecting bag moving around and said, as he dumped out the snake, “ I wonder what we have here?” That watersnake was at least 5 feet long and went straight for the guy, such that he got up on a chair to escape before he got his snake stick in play.

I have laughed over that escapade many times. 

 

7 minutes ago, Brad Eden said:

I caught a couple eastern hognose when a kid living in MA. They were rare though. The ones I caught didn't have that type of coloration or as distinct a pattern.

 

Anyhow. True story(s), which Ive written about before. When I was 12 years old, (almost 50 years ago) on my birthday, which is why I remember the timing, I caught what at the time was the largest Northern water snake recorded in MA, maybe New England, can't remember. It was huge, close to 4' long I think, and thick as a forearm. I had my picture taken and it was printed in the local newspaper etc. We lived down the street from an Audubon Sanctuary with ponds etc., which is where a I caught it. Back then they were thought to kill too many ducklings and goselings along with snapping turtles, so the Audubon director paid me and a friend 25 cents for every snake or snapper we caught. They kept them on display and I don't know what eventually happened to them, but probably not pretty.

 

I also bought a red-tailed or common Boa Constrictor when I was in my late teens. "Isaac" was 16" long and grew to over 6' before I sold him some years later. He traveled with me to college at UMass Amherst and I hid him in my dorm room. There was a line down the hall on every feeding day. He ate live mice and eventually small rabbits and dead rats that I bought at the pet store. Dead rats because they can injure a snake before being swallowed.  And you have to keep buying bigger Aquarium type cages as they grow. Aft college with jobs and moving around I decided he was too much to deal with so I sold him. He was never aggressive, very docile actually.

 

Snakes are fascinating, but again I've never had to deal with poisonous snakes. 

Back when I was a senior at the University of Texas I lived in an apartment complex that was plagued by door to door salesmen. Finally I had enough. Out west of Austin in a park I picked up a 5 foot long western diamond back rattler. (Got this idea from a store in a small west Texas town that had a half dozen LARGE diamondbacks right in the showwindows to keep the smash and grab crowd away) I put him in a 30 gallon fish tank, put a piece of hardware cloth with some bricks on it and put the tank right at the front door. Soon as some door to door drummer rang the doorbell I’d open the door, Mr rattlesnake would come to full attention and rattle away and the salesmen suddenly found reasons to be somewhere else while my bro and I laughed our a$$es off.  

Very effective that rattlesnake was. He did such a good job that I went to a lot of trouble to put him back in his original home when Uncle Sugar decided he needed my services or the war would be lost.    

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Allen McCallie

This is my all-time favorite demonstration of most people's innate fear of all things herpetological (including me)...

 

 

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Wildcat

I grew up in Florida and loved finding snakes, Florida has most north american species including the venomous ones as natives. Hunting the swamps for hogs and such I would occasionally grab a BIG water snake and slide it into my shirt, it would wrap around my waist and calm down pretty quick. Once back in the camp I would slide it into a friends sleeping bag and wait ;)

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Tim Frazier
39 minutes ago, Wildcat said:

I grew up in Florida and loved finding snakes, Florida has most north american species including the venomous ones as natives. Hunting the swamps for hogs and such I would occasionally grab a BIG water snake and slide it into my shirt, it would wrap around my waist and calm down pretty quick. Once back in the camp I would slide it into a friends sleeping bag and wait ;)

 

I had a guy not talk to me for 10 years after doing that...It was a big Black Rat snake that was very docile but that didn't seem to matter!

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steveziv

The second one looks a lot like the baby rat snake I found in my yard this week.

 

Kcttg0N.jpg

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