Friday, August 15, 2008

What's for dinner?

There's a commotion outside the back door. Through the screen I hear the fussing of chickadees and blue-gray gnat catchers, at a tempo I cannot ignore. Stepping just into the woods, I can see the problem clearly.
Fred has left his neighborhood hangout again.


Six feet of Black Rat snake coursing along the vines and trees of our back woods never goes unnoticed. This time, though, he seems content to return home to our attic space, unfed.
Perhaps he's eating in tonight?

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6 comments:

Sandy Maudlin said...

So THAT'S where our black snake went after he devoured every baby blue birs in the nest! He is BIG, and I haven't seen him for a couple of years:-D

NCmountainwoman said...

Does Fred actually live in the attic? Or does he simply use it as a good hunting place? Has he ever decided to check out the rest of the house?

Nice shots. He is gorgeous. When I first "found" your blog, I spent an evening reading your archives. (Yes, your blog is that good.) The post about Fred escaping was great. I'm sure he was delighted that you invited him to stay.

nina said...

Fred resides in the space between the roof and the walls of our house. We hear him move, even in cooler weather. On warm days, his head hangs out from beneath the soffit near the downspout--then he reaches to the nearest branch and cruises the woods.
Yes, we found evidence of his roaming through the house, only once--a shed skin!

Rambling Woods said...

Nice photo..my sister lost her bluebirds to a black snake.Everything has to eat I guess.

KatDoc said...

You know, I have mixed feelings about Fred. On one hand, it is pretty cool that he lives with you, and I'm sure he excels in mouse control (Maybe I need a snake - my cats are falling down on the job) but on the other hand, I think I would find it hard to sleep, knowing there was a 6 foot snake over my head.

And then, there is the thing about bluebirds ... If even one feather on my babies' heads were touched, Fred and I would be having a real serious discussion.

~Kathi, impressed, as always, by Nina's snake handling skills

nina said...

Oh, I know!
Most people have an automatic preference when given the choice between bluebirds (or any cute helpless baby animal) and snakes. And I've relocated several who cruise too close to a nest I'm watching.
But, for all the mice he disposes of in our outbuildings and attic spaces, he's worth his weight in gold! Can you imagine the piles of rodents we'd have?
Snakes are great partners in country living.