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It’s a Jungle Out There!


picture of snake catchers

Do you like snakes? Even though I know there are supposed to be "good snakes" that eat "bad snakes," I still have an aversion to all snakes. We learned recently that a "crazy woman" who lives in our subdivision had released her pet python into the wild a few weeks ago. At first we didn't know whether to believe it, but her (now our) python has been sighted several times, most recently in the small lake in our subdivision. Yikes! (The picture on the right is of some men whose job it is to catch snakes — live!)

We currently need to be able to laugh about snakes, just to break the tension a little. Here are a couple of bits of snake humor I found in my files.

An anaconda is the largest snake in the world. It is a relative of the boa constrictor. It grows to thirty-five feet in length and weighs between three and four hundred pounds at the maximum. Here are the humorous instructions on what to do if you are about to be attacked by an anaconda:

1. If you are attacked by an anaconda, do not run. The snake is faster than you are.

2. Lie flat on the ground. Put your arms tight against your sides, your legs tight against one another.

3. Tuck your chin in.

4. The snake will come and begin to nudge and climb over your body.

5. Do not panic.

6. After the snake has examined you, it will begin to swallow you, always from the end and beginning at the feet. Permit the snake to swallow your feet and ankles. Do not panic.

7. The snake will now begin to suck your legs into its body. You must lie perfectly still. This will take a long time.

8. When the snake has reached your knees slowly and with as little movement as possible, reach down, take your knife and very gently slide it into the side of the snake's mouth between the edge of its mouth and your leg, then suddenly rip upwards, severing the snake's head.

9. Be sure you have your knife.

10. Be sure your knife is sharp.

Well, there you have it — forewarned is forearmed, I guess!

divider

There were two snake buddies slithering along through the grass when one asked his friend, "Thay, are we poithonouth?"

And his friend answered, "Yes, very. Why do you ask?"

And the first explained, " I jutht bit my tongue."

divider

About nine years ago when the neighborhood we lived in at the time was invaded by copperheads, I sent out an iv about snakes. I was surprised to receive e-mails from snake-handler types (two in Hendersonville NC!) saying they would come any time day or night to pick up a snake if we found one! If those guys hear about our neighborhood python, please contact me! When someone in our subdivision contacted Animal Control the other day, they were told that the snake has to get in someone's home before they will send anyone out. Nice!

Do you have any snake experiences or advice to share? Please feel free to leave a comment.

quotation...

"When we think we haven't been caught, we've forgotten Who runs the universe." - Drew Conley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

A female snake charmer was wooed by an undertaker and accepted his offer of marriage. They received many gifts at the wedding, but their favorite was a set of towels embroidered with the words "hiss" and "hearse"


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13 Comments on “It’s a Jungle Out There!”

  1. #1 Michael
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 8:20 am

    I’m not a fan of snakes either. And, I’m sorry that animal control will not come help you out in your neighborhood. Perhaps if you could persuade them that pythons do not naturally inhabit the upstate of South Carolina they might actually come and remove the menace from your neighborhood. Or, you could hire the guys in the picture you posted.

  2. #2 b.j.
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 10:09 am

    This is actually a very serious problem in my home state of Florida. The python has no natural predators (here), and is endangering the lives and habitat of many native Florida wildlife, including the alligators. (There is a very disturbing picture out there showing a python eating a gator, but the gator fought back while inside the python. Neither survived. If you look up “python eats gator” or something like that, you will find the pictures.)
    I suggest contacting your state conservation agency instead of animal control. It is because so many incidents like this were left unchecked that there is such a problem in Florida now. I would hate for something similar to happen in your area!

  3. #3 Brian
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 10:14 am

    Yikes, a python in our neighborhood!! You live way too close to me for me to have read this post. Now I’m going to have nightmares about snakes. Guess we need to bring our rabbit inside for a while! Let me know when it gets in your house so Animal Control can come get it!

  4. #4 PvR
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 10:28 am

    The funniest part: Anacondas can outrun humans. Can you imagine an anaconda chasing you? It sure makes for a great Hollywood movie. 😉

  5. #5 Jenny
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    What is it with “bad” snakes in Greenville?!?! We discovered a Copperhead in our yard (see post), friends nearby discovered a cottonmouth (?), and now you have a Python!! “Bad” snakes are only *supposed* to be in the jungle or in zoos . . .

  6. #6 Rob
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 4:58 pm

    @Michael – If this python finds a mate, maybe they will “naturally” inhabit the state. Too bad they eat small animals and toddlers instead of the kudzu that has also been brought in to our area. I would gladly have those guys in the picture rid us of this snake. 🙂

    @b.j. – We have read about the problem in FL from people’s releasing their “pet” pythons in the same way this woman did here. My wife read that because of the problem in FL, there’s a study going on here in SC. They have put some neutered male python in an enclosed area outdoors to see if they can survive our winters. In preparation for this post I saw a comment online that there are no bad pythons, only bad python owners. Hmmm…. maybe……

    @Brian – Get your friends in enforcement to come to the rescue of us all in the jungles of Paris Mountain! 😀

    @Philip – Snakes can actually slither along amazingly fast. I hope I never have to find out personally.

    @Jenny – Seriously! It’s bad enough to have the snakes native to our area, let alone have them imported and released to the habitat!

  7. #7 Skip Hughes
    on Jun 24th, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    About that python! All the points I would make have already been covered. It would be foolish to let that python live in the wild. It won’t be long (if it hasn’t happened already) that someone else will release one of the opposite sex.

    I’m sure you could find hundreds of volunteers willing to hunt and dispose of it. I can’t imagine pythons being a protected species. The only problem would be discharging a firearm in a residential neighborhood. If the authorities won’t do it, there must be a legal way to work around the problem.

  8. #8 Laura B.
    on Jun 25th, 2010 at 7:25 am

    I read somewhere that when they go hunting the “biggies,” one guy holds onto a tree and offers the snake just *one* leg . . . the other acts as a brake to keep the snake from going too far while the guy’s buddies dispatch the critter. Dunno if it’s true, and I don’t want to find out. Please keep your neighborhood snake to yourself!!!

    As for good snakes/bad snakes, I’m glad for the occasional king snakes (black with white pattern) we’ve got in our yard . . . they keep the copperheads under control. We did dispatch *one* when the kids were small simply because any snake bite can hurt, and it was right up next to the house. We also like the little keeled green snakes because they eat bugs. The kids have caught & handled both kings & greens since they have gotten big enough to identify the critters safely.

    We do need to be careful about copperheads in our neighborhood, though. Some of our neighbors have lost dogs to copperhead bites in the past. No fun in the stream out back on really hot days . . . that’s where the snakes will be!

  9. #9 Amanda
    on Jun 25th, 2010 at 10:18 am

    I stepped on a stick once while at my grandparents’ river house in Monck’s Corner, SC and was quite surprised when it slithered away quite quickly. Apparently it was *not* a stick after all. I think it was a garter snake.

    On the subject of alligators, when I typed in my home zip code in the local news section of google, the first headline to pop up was about a 70 year old man being attacked by an alligator while playing golf….

  10. #10 Mary Sidwell
    on Jun 25th, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    We had an extremely long and fat black snake wrap itself around our very suburban front porch railings one very, very dry summer after I had watered our bushes for a couple of hours. It was so large and motionless that I thought the neighbor boy was playing a joke on us with a fake snake. Was I shocked when it raised its head! Please don’t send any pythons over here.

  11. #11 joe wooster
    on Jun 26th, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    How many cats have gone missing in your neighborhood since the python has been released?

  12. #12 Tyler
    on Jun 26th, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    While hiking with my sister in South Carolina last semester we came across what I thought was a black snake on the trail. I went to the side of the trail and I was snapping pictures then we went on out merry way. I showed the pictures to my Dad and he informed me that it wasn’t a black snake but wasn’t sure what it was . . . my uncle later looked at the picture and told me that it was a water moccasin! I guess I need to get a little better at identifying snakes before I get that close to take pictures again!

  13. #13 b.j.
    on Jun 28th, 2010 at 11:05 am

    I had to laugh at Tyler’s comment (but shudder too). It reminded me of an incident a few years back. My five year old sister was jogging down the trail toward us, happily jabbering, then jumped up in the air, feet running in the air for what seemed a couple seconds before hitting the ground on the other side, then took off screaming “snake!!” She looked just like road runner, feet spinning around! This snake was a black snake, though, thankfully. I shot it since it was in camp and heading for our animals. I held it up by it’s tail as high as I could, and its head still lay on the ground!