Saturday, September 29, 2018

I can't believe I ate the whole thing...

Found this rather bloated Trans Pecos Rat Snake hanging out this morning at the end of one of my greenhouse trusses.  Perhaps he is why I haven't seen any baby rabbits this year - or responsible for the recent disappearance of dove hatchlings and eggs....Video next Friday.  82,88,69,0,B

9 comments:

David Johnson said...

Holy crap that's a big ole snake. Did you let him pass on threw.

Marlin Andrus said...

Danid...rat snakes are a good snake to have around. They are very good at what their name implies. Just comes natural and helps keep a balance of nature. Harmless to man.

Margery Bills said...

Caught. Game over. Is that a look of surprise and repentance considering that he recently had a meal.

Margery Bills said...

So is he/she going to be one of your good guys who hangs around (what about the chicken) like my geckos, spiders, etc.?

MsBelinda said...

A good snake is a dead snake!

Miquel said...

This swollen belly seems to be saying something...

Robert said...

And while you may lose some birds he's doing a fine job of keeping the rodents at bay.

John Wells said...

It is a common misconception that snakes keep the rodent population under control. A snake will eat a mouse about once every 2 weeks. A single female mouse can give birth to up to 60 mice per year. So unless you have a lot of snakes - or they are only eating pregnant female mice, the mice win hands down.

pamit said...

John, you are wrong. Snakes do indeed function to keep rodent populations under control. Of course snakes are not the only things that affect rodent mortality - don't be silly. There is disease, starvation, and OTHER predators. It is all a web of interconnected activity; if you remove one cog, something may move in to take that cog's function - or that may not happen, and populations will become unbalanced. The point is to leave nature alone, as much as we can. Goodness; a person that believes in an omnipotent, all-seeing God shouldn't have a hard time understanding (and more importantly, accepting) the concept of interoperability in nature.

Your claim that a snake eats once every 2 weeks is also suspect. It very much depends on the environmental temps and the availability of prey. And consider the variability in the size of different species of snakes as well. Your ratsnake can get over 5 feet long. I guaran-damn-tee you that sucker is eating more than 2 mice a month in your hot, dry climate.

p.s. I have a degree in biology, grad work in rodent parasitology and population dynamics, and have kept and bred snakes for the pet trade.