Thursday, February 10, 2011

What Happened to Spring? (part 2)

Suddenly the stomach of the snake just burst open.  She was having her babies!  Baby Copperheads were wiggling and squiggling on the railroad tie, her stomach filled with them.  Frantically, Joe lifted the shovel from the spine of the mother and began slapping babies as fast as he could. 

I know this all sound so cruel and perhaps it was.  But it happened.  And, in the end, baby slipped over the side of the beam and into the water below.  It was carried away, out of the yard.  I hope.

However, this is not how this story ends.  When Joe went to climb back up the bank, he stepped on a hole in the soft earth.  It was a yellow jackets nest.  Joe began to run as fast as he could across the open field and headed down towards where I was get the garden hose.  I thought if I doused him with cold water, his scent would be harder for them to follow!  He was not happy with me when I sprayed him.  Nope.
In fact, if I remember correctly, the words that came out of his mouth were NOT nice at all.  The good thing was that he only had a few stings.  So, that hot, humid lazy summer day in August turned out to be quite an adventure here in the Hollow. 

I've included a link that has some very interesting information for all of you nature lovers out there.  Remember to never reach under a rock or a tree limb without looking first.

"Life cycle of copperhead snakes

Copperheads are viviparous - their embryos develop inside the female body and she gives live birth to 3-10 young snakes during late summer or early fall. Young snakes measure 8-10 inches (20-26 cm). Young copperhead snakes resemble adults except for a more grayish coloration and a yellowish tip on their tails."


  1. Just thinking about all those poisonous slithering babies gives me the creeps. Joe did the right thing in my book.

    And on top of the snakes, yellow jackets, poor guy.

    Living in the country does have its moments!

  2. Yuk - the thought of all those baby snakes just makes me shudder....! After all that, you should be glad it's cold and snowy - no snakes or yellow jackets to deal with right now!!


  3. You are right about not putting your hands somewhere where you can't see what might be lurking... I worry about poisonous spiders in our area. They can be deadly.

  4. This does not sound like it was a good day for Joe. ;-)

  5. you brought back a horrible memory from my child hood, the rivers are dark and black in the swamps of Georgia, in the swimming hole we always used, a 2 year old got in a nest of water moccasins with all the babies like you are describing, they killed her and after that i have always disliked poisonous snakes, i would have done the same thing or rather my husband would have, not me. i am also afraid of any stinging bee or wasp. yikes glad you were both ok

  6. Oh nature was having its way with Joe that day! Or at least fighting back with all it could!

  7. I was right JP! lol I thought that there were babies in her belly! Did you know that the babies are more poisonous than the adults? They are! I can't believe after he killed the snakes he got into a bees nest like that! That's just a wild story!

    Have a Great Day!

  8. I had the 'advantage' of reading two days of posts in one--Good for me, but bad day for Joe!! :-)

    I love everything about the country but the bugs and especially the snakes! I live in fear of them--Last spring a black snake was in a tree...I know they're good snakes, but not to me!!

    Hope you've had a good day!!

  9. Okay like I said yesterday - Joe was a pretty big hero. I mean I hate to kill anything you know, but snakes, poisoneous snakes?


    Hope he told you later thanks for the spray!

  10. I am in love with your house. What a beautiful setting.

  11. While I am sure this was not fun at the time, it is one of those incidents that you can look back on and laugh. Living in the country has many benefits!


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