My last post on June 6th focused on a visit from a Mama Turkey and four babies. That same day, a short time after I saw the turkeys, I saw a rat snake crawling out of the grass and disappearing under the porch. A couple of minutes later, I saw what I think was one of the water snake species that live around here. Three days later I had this experience:
I took a break to gather and load trash around the planter garden. I used my cane handle to lift part of a broken bird bath so I could pick it up and bag it, and came face to face with a copperhead. She kind of came up out of the leaves underneath the bowl, twisted around a bit, moved away from me then turned her head back toward me. For a moment she was looking right at me – seemingly right into my eyes – with her mouth open, and hissing a bit. Then she crawled off.
After another week or so, I came home from town and found what looked like the same snake lounging on top of some bags of garden soil. Since then I've seen her often in that same spot.
Yesterday I saw her again and took a photo, noting some odd shaped bulges, and guessing that she had caught some food recently. As I got ready to share the photo later in the day, I decided to look outside the window to see if she was still there. There was indeed a snake on the soil bags. Since the light was a little better, I took some more photos.
When I uploaded them to edit, I couldn't believe what I saw:
An unexpected gift from Mother Nature.
If you want to know more about copperheads, check out this great Northern Copperhead page at Smithsonian's National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute