Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Ratsnake Redo

Oh no, not another ratsnake post.
Haven't I posted about these wonderful critters before?
Yeah, I thought so too.

I had not stepped more than ten feet off my porch Saturday when my snakedar went off and I looked down at the ground to see a very long snake extending from under the tarp over the chicken cage.

I love living here.

I'm convinced this is the same huge grey ratsnake I've caught before here at PFHQ.
I've also half convinced myself that it is "Ratty", a very young grey ratsnake I caught years ago and kept as a pet. The kids were little at the time and Ratty lived inside their bathroom in a ten gallon aquarium for several months.
I wanted the kids to be comfortable around snakes and keeping a little foot long grey ratsnake as a pet seemed like a good indoctrination to the herpy world. After Ratty was released, the same aquarium held tiger salamanders, toads, and eventually actual fish.

Obviously the herpy indoctrination worked on Emma. She took this big wild grey ratsnake from me like a pro when I offered it to her last Saturday.

The reason I like to think that this beautiful snake is Ratty is the fact that it is so docile. Grey rats are mellow enough, but they can bite pretty good if upset. Even worse than their bite is a foul smelling musk that they release when ticked off.
This snake never attempted to bite and never musked either Emma or me, even as we posed and passed him back and forth.

Snake hugs! Yes, I'm laughing. ... snake hugs tickle.

Straight, this snake measured 5 feet long. When the photo session was over, I released it near the green lattice behind me, where it could slither under the house and chill out for a while in the shade.

I'm sure we will meet again ... and I'll post about it when we do.


dani813 said...

Frogs and another snake post.You rock,FC.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much FC---I know I can always count on you to remnind me of the creepy-crawley things to look forrward to in my new home! Hope the family is doing well, say hello to all.

SwampAngel65 said...

Gorgeous snake! We don't have those down here. Just the red and yellow rats. I've indoctrinated my kids the same way...at one time, though, we had six snakes at one time!

tsiya said...

Used to see them all over when I'd visit my friend John Falkenberry in Old Town. They are usually pretty docile. Pretty country over there for sure.

Sharon said...

Like father, like daughter :)

Rurality said...

The last one we saw that size had a pullet halfway down its throat. :(

Cathy Mullins said...

I'm looking forward to perusing your blog at some length, but for now just wanted to say hey!

We're getting ready to leave Florida after 3 years in Clearwater. It's just not for us.

p.s. Your header subtitle is impossible to read. You could change the color of the text and that might help. sorry, I know you don't need suggestions on how to improve your blog, please forgive my arrogance.

Smilin-buddha said...

If you find any Hognose. Think of you boy. Todd

robin andrea said...

I think it must be Ratty. He sure seems tolerant of you and Emma. Must be nice to have such a slithery old friend.

Floridacracker said...


Are you referring to me?

I'm getting a handmedown red rat snake in about 3 weeks!

Like St.Johns 40 years ago.
People around here call them Oak Snakes.

Okay, I'm beaming now.

And eggs, they do love eggs.
Course, so do I.

I changed my header pic without adjusting the text color. Your point is valid.
Clearwater would not be for me either.
Good luck where ever you wander.

Smilin B,
I used to find hognose snakes here, but it's been a long time.

I'm expecting a lot from a snake brain, but whatever the case, it is a very docile wild ratsnake and they are not always that way.

SophieMae said...

Likes snakes and George Strait... my kinda gal. 8-]

Re the earlier 'sheep-frog' reference. They're actually Eastern narrow-mouthed toads. We nicknamed them for their bleat.

Floridacracker said...

She got that shirt at his concert!
Oh, narrow mouths. They are cute little things.

Hurricane Teen said...

hmm catching up here...I'll make it short and sweet...
I loved the frog video! Many, many, memories were triggered. Keep the videos coming!
Great frog pics as usual.
That's one puuuurty snake, too.
And I am also jealous of your family. Bringing a snake like that around my any female in my family would result in her climbing up a tree to get away...And none of the females in my family typically climb trees.

Deb said...

Okay, I'm convinced Steve Irwin's spirit found its way to you. I'm glad to see Emma got some of it too.

We had a rat snake at our temporary home in Missouri. It ate three robin babies we had been watching, just as they were ready to fledge. So I'm not too sentimental about these reptiles. Sorry.

Doug Taron said...

That's one fine snake. When I first started working at the museum, we had 2 rat snakes. We named them Betty and Veronica.

Floridacracker said...

Glad you liked the frog songs. Nobody here freaks over snakes much.
You need to train those females ...

Hey, I was grabbing snakes before he was born!
Thank you tho.
Ratsnakes are excellent climbers so baby robins are definitely on the menu.

What! No Jughead?

SwampAngel65 said...

Red Rats (Corn snakes)are so pretty. Cool you're getting one soon. My first snake was a red rat named Lucy. My oldest was about 8 yrs. old at the time...he kind of didn't put the tank lid on good and Lucy escaped. She must've made it out of the house because...not to be gross...but we never, um, smelled her.

I only have an amelanistic (?)corn snake and a pueblan milksnake now. I'm kind of ready for a snake break, though.

You want a couple more?

Eva Matthews said...

That's a beautiful snake.

And I'm tagging you:
The Flying Mullet

I'm not into those meme things but I'm breaking tradition and sending this out.

Thunder Dave said...

He knew he was in good hands from both you and Emma!

Hey I experienced my first sand storm yesterday, it was a little one and sort of a disappointment because we were hoping for rain!

Floridacracker said...

Cornsnakes are gorgeous.
I had a similar snake escape mystery and like you, we never smelled him either so we assumed the best.

Thanks for thinking of meme.
There might be a little delay, but I'll check it out.

Not quite like a day at the beach I guess.

threecollie said...

Better late than never I guess...to get around to comment. Great photos and so cool that you have a resident tame snake...and such a large one!

Cathy said...

I got a little teary looking at Emma's sweet face after reading your the post about your neice. My God, how you must love her.