Stay Alert

Rattlers are awake
They don’t like to be stepped on
Stay alert walking
Bear … 03.24.2014
ⓒ Bearspawprint
Still groggy and sluggish they might not have time to get out of the way or even warn you before you try to put a clumsy foot on them …

.C. horridus among the leaves

. This is the fellow Dear Son IV saw yesterday, March 23,  the first one this year. The snake politely waited while Roy came and collected us, and stayed nice and still while we got a good look. He perhaps thought that if he stayed completely still he wouldn’t be seen in the protected spot in which he was sheltering. However the tension required to hold his rigid posture for so long could be released in either a strike, longer than his body length, or motion in any direction that is startlingly quick. Should the snake in its snakey mind decide that  the best course of action to effect an escape towards what he perceives to be  safety  includes disabling  dangers to himself, that is what he will try to do. As fast as possible.  Hazards are dangerous predators like people, dogs or other harassing obnoxious  intrusions.   Snakes will try to avoid us, but as he doesn’t have too many defenses to choose from, he may have to bite.  Water moccasins or cotton mouths, are not so shy and do not try to warn us away.  But even they prefer to not be bothered by us.  They have their own concerns which, being snakes, they would rather weren’t people.
When walking, make lots of noise, apologize out loud for intruding, so that the snakes and other animals can hear you. Disturb the foliage as little as possible. Step over and around brush and fallen dead wood with extreme caution. And think, if you were that little, wouldn’t you try to avoid getting stepped on by rude big klutzes like most of us are? Who likes for strangers to be tromping around in their homes?
Bear … 03.24.2014
Canebreak or timber rattlers–
Diamond back rattlers
Pygmy rattlers
Cotton mouths or water moccasins
Coral snakes


6 comments on “Stay Alert

  1. Johnny Ojanpera says:

    Nice shot. It’s a wonder they hide with such a mean defense system.


  2. Bear so interesting you would post this! You know I have ponds and land behind my home. It was still cold yesterday but as my dog and I went through the woods I thought I need to stop this in about a week and use the paths. Great reminder Bear!


    • Last night it warmed up to 60 F. Water moccasins are more aggressive than most other snakes. And plentiful. I recall the river crossing episode in Larry McMurtry’s LONESOME DOVE.

      Glad you are already paying attention. Also I am glad you have some wood nearby to be cautious in. 🙂



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