Snake update

Texas Rat Snakes are nonvenomous but very aggressive. At nearly 4 feet long, this guy was big enough to do real damage to little feet and legs, yet just small enough to find several convenient ways into our unfinished house in search of fragrant gerbils, so we decided to knock him off the side of the house and kill him.

First I hit him several times with a slingshot but only succeeded in making him MAD. Did you know that Texas Rat Snakes buzz their tails exactly like a rattlesnake when they are angry? He was very angry. But he was still 20 feet off the ground, firmly wrapped around the birdnest in our gable. Yes, we could hear his temper from that distance, loud and clear. We don’t generally kill snakes, but he wasn’t helping his case at all.

I ran in the house for a potty break and to put on my boots, then headed back out. The 2 little ones stayed behind, but the general run for boots that followed really got their curiosity up.  (Incidentally, it was all I could do to force my calves down into those boots.  Apparently my feet and belly aren’t the only things that are swelling with this pregnancy.  Getting the boots off just a few minutes later was almost a post in itself.)

The slingshot just wasn’t bringing him down so the girls found plumbing parts to link two 10-foot pieces of pvc pipe; this proved just right to reach the nest from the ground. They were a bunch of chickens so they all stood back – far back – and the Pregnant Lady raised the pipe to the nest. Just as I was about to do the deed, The Boy appeared not 6 feet away from the projected landing point! He was wearing his sisters’ boots and a diaper, and ready to join the ruckus. “I got my shoes, guys. Shoes!”

Short pause here. Relocate The Boy to a safe place. Resume horror story.

Since the nest was empty, I knocked it down to dislodge the snake. It was the only way to get him down, and I really didn’t want him wandering into the house when he was done digesting. We all screamed appropriately and stared in horror while he gathered his bearings. Then I had somebody hand me the prepared shovel and I chased him under the house, where I pinned him firmly in place.

More screaming.

After a few phone calls and some hesitation, we snuffed him. We’re not mindless snake murderers – really, we’re not. But we had several reasons to finish him off, and the decision was made.

After that, like true homeschoolers, there was only one thing left to do. You know what I mean, don’t you? Well, don’t you? Really, do I have to say it? Because I didn’t hang around to watch this part. You’ll have to hear it from somebody else. What would your children have done in the name of education? And who says homeschoolers can’t participate in science and lab classes?


  1. Wow, how brave of you, Kimc! So pregnant and so brave!!! I would faint if I had to kill a snake and I’m not even pregnant 🙂

  2. You rock! I love the captions on your photos too “evil mom”…

  3. Bethany says:

    Ahhhh! You’re amazing. The “pregnant lady with a slingshot” picture is great. First the spiders, then that giant thing you found in your trash can, and now this. You go, girl. This makes the snake that was in my garage a couple of days ago look like a large worm.

  4. Y’all sure are tough cookies!

  5. AHHHHH!!!!! There’s no way I’d be messing with a snake like that. You’re a pioneer woman, I am amazed!! And YUCK YUCK YUCK!!!!!!!!

  6. Good for you! Around here we have a saying-“The only good snake is a dead snake.” Especially after watching friends go through the whole snake-bitten child, ER, ambulance ride experience. No fun at all!

  7. Marcy Smith says:

    I don’t think my boys would be that brave.
    We hate snakes around here.!!!!!! Dh would have to come home and deal with him. The only time my homeschool boys get near a snake is when it is behind a glass at the zoo and then it is not a very long look. I don’t know what i hate more snakes or rats!!! Why GOD why did you make this things?

  8. Melinda says:

    Y’all are some brave women! And who knew you could kill snakes and still look so feminine!

    I personally would have locked myself and the offspring in the house the entire day (or until I convinced one of my men-folk to leave work early and get rid of it!)

    What can I say? I’m a chicken and I might get eaten too!


  9. Way to go, KimC!

    Maybe you’ve considered skinning the snake, and hanging it over the mantle piece??? 😀 You know, a memorial to your valiant exploits??


    Well, I am glad you got rid of that evil snake. I’m sorry you lost your swallows. 🙁 Maybe a new bunch will take up space in the newly-vacated gable of your house?

    BTW, nice one with the slingshot. 😉

  10. Meredith_in_Aus says:

    Ewww…and I thought the last post made my skin crawl!

    I am definitely a chicken.

    So cool that you could actually hit the snake with that slingshot. :o)

    Have a wonderful snake-free day.

    In Him


  11. Oh, and I forgot to say you have some very brave girls. I only do this because I have to – I can’t push one of my 3 brothers into doing it like I did growing up! 😛

    And it’s perfectly okay to scream as long as you still get the job done!!!! 😀

  12. Grew up on a farm with a mom petrified of snakes. I don’t like ’em, but if I kill one I know *it* won’t scare me again. LOL Don’t I sound heartless? 😛

    I’d rather have a few fuzzy barn cats carrying around some ticks and fleas keeping down the mouse population than a slithery snake that doesn’t know how to stay out of my house. 🙂

  13. oh. my. goodness. Kim, I would be scared to live in your house if all those daughters of yours were boys! Honestly, all the extra situations like this that would turn up…

    My little men drug in an empty hornet nest last night. It’s currently on the mantel behind me. {yeeesh}

    Heebee geebies gallore. : p

  14. When we visited my sister in TX in March, her hubby killed a chicken snake with his rifle. We then, as good little homeschoolers, cut him open and “oohed and ahhed”. We actually got to him BEFORE he ate any eggs, but I thought his insides would have looked neat AFTER he had eaten. My sister didn’t agree! So, I would like details about what the inside of your snake looked like!!!! 🙂 You were very brave!

  15. Oh, are you not wanting any other people to move to your wonderful state? Yuck! I have the shivers… though snakes do not bother me like spiders do.

  16. Wow! And you all have smiles on your faces. Ughhh I would have had to call dh home to move it, then he would have put it in an aquarium and let the children keep it. Um, nevermind, I would have to call you and your girls if it ever happens here.

    Did they dissect it?

  17. You are brave. I would have ran screaming. Great pic with the slingshot and your girls. 🙂

  18. Brave woman! I had to do that once. Screamed like a girl the whole time.

    (Do you know you are the one who taught me how to link in comments? And now aren’t you glad, so you can read that little gem?)

  19. Oops, and I should add that *of course* we were all homeschooled! 😀

  20. Haha, no doubt they dissected it and hoped to preserve the skin? My siblings and I have done the same – except it was with rattlesnakes. They get heartlessly killed.

  21. ew…..brave woman. I live in the countryside of Mongolia and encounter lots of “rugged” stuff, but thankfully NOT snakes! ;O

  22. I like how you *didn’t* stick around to watch the dissection….
    The slingshot picture is quite amazing – and you are VERY brave…if something like that happened here, we would wait for Dad to deal with it!!

  23. I LOVE the slingshot picture. You are a brave woman, Kim!!! I am glad you got him. Are the girls going to try and keep the skin?

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