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Thread: I found a reral nicen copper today ...

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  1. #1
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    I found a reral nicen copper today ...

    ...copperhead that is. Since I was in his territory, I retreated and let him go on his merry way. Scared the crap out me for a moment or two!
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    “It is best as one grows older to strip oneself of possessions, to shed oneself downward like a tree, to be almost wholly earth before one dies.”

  2. #2
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    Out in a field?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by smokeythecat View Post
    Out in a field?
    Yeah .. about 100 feet from the wood line.
    “It is best as one grows older to strip oneself of possessions, to shed oneself downward like a tree, to be almost wholly earth before one dies.”

  4. #4
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    I reached down and picked up my shovel a couple of days ago and a small copperhead maybe 8-9" long was about a foot from where my hand was.
    That was the 3rd kind of snake in under and hour and the end of that hunt.
    “During the gold rush its a good time to be in the pick and shovel business.” Mark Twain

  5. #5
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    I'm...going...into...a...bare...field...tomorrow. Makes me feel soooo much better. I doubt I'll see one. And I move slow.
    Icewing, nagant, creskol and 4 others like this.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by smokeythecat View Post
    I'm...going...into...a...bare...field...tomorrow. Makes me feel soooo much better. I doubt I'll see one. And I move slow.

    Good luck out there , Smokey!
    “It is best as one grows older to strip oneself of possessions, to shed oneself downward like a tree, to be almost wholly earth before one dies.”

  7. #7
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    Wow crescol that'd a whole lot of hurtin there! They always chase me. What did you have for breakfast? Lucky Charms? LOL

    My dad always told us "Don't look for a snake and you won't see one!" If you think about it that's very true, but it's not the one you see but the one that sees you. He had known an old man when he was a child, that milked rattlesnakes in the mountains that would later become the Shenandoah National Forest. He told Dad he had been bitten many times, but he carried a baby food jar full of coal oil (kerosene). If he was bitten he would invert the bottle on the wound and wait till it drew the poison out. If he was bitten on a place where he couldn't do that, he'd douse his handkerchief and wrap it up.

    I had an older friend that loved to wade through the bushes to get to the best fishin holes. He would wrap newspaper thickly around his lower legs and then put on gum boots. I guess he never thought about getting it on the foot!

    Best wishes and stay safe, but you can't help but wonder what he guarding?
    creskol, Inspector and huntsman53 like this.
    Phil

  8. #8
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    Copperheads often aspirate the smell of cucumbers.
    Phil

  9. #9
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    Damn....I would have pee'd my pants....
    creskol and Inspector like this.

  10. #10
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    Glad you are OK!
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  11. #11
    I'll bet it did scare the crap out of you ! Our most popular snake around here, is the Gardner. Not much to worry about.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reanm8er View Post
    Copperheads often aspirate the smell of cucumbers.
    No way I'm getting close enough to smell their breath!
    "jus cuz it's wrote down, don't make it so"

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reanm8er View Post
    Copperheads often aspirate the smell of cucumbers.
    Often is the key word here... or maybe sometimes. I’d heard that copperheads smell like cucumbers from several folks but had never experienced it so I was thinking that it was perhaps an old wive’s tale. I’d been around a bunch of them, close too, back when I was a research tech doing vegetation surveys and measuring trees. Then one day I was in a research plot in Breathitt County, Kentucky and I smelled cucumbers. I figured I’d stepped on a plant that smelled like a cucumber, but just then a fairly large copperhead shot through the herbaceous vegetation about 18 inches in front of me. I thought, “Huh! I guess it’s true.” I was unnerved while taking the measurements in that plot since I didn’t see where it went. There were several times that I was measuring trees (often hundreds or even thousands of seedlings and saplings per day) and I’d look down to see a copperhead just like creskol’s within a foot of my feet. I much preferred the timber rattlesnakes. At least they let me know they were there!

    That’s a beautiful snake creskol!

    Kindest regards,
    Kantuck

  14. #14
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    Glad you and the snake are okay, Cres. I spent so many months getting things ready for my daughter's wedding on the creek back in April that I neglected the rest of the land, mowing the paths in the woods, etc. Last week, I was out front watering some small trees that I planted (been mighty dry lately until yesterday) and heard a loud crash down in the woods. The next morning I was back out watering again and decided to go see what the commotion was all about the evening before. In shorts, no-shows and sneakers, I called myself keeping an eye out as I slowly made my way through some grown up areas. I crossed a little drainage ditch on a metal foot walk, went about 50 feet further and not seeing anything, turned around and headed back. Wasn't too keen on walking through all the undergrowth with the ticks and snakes and all anyway, especially dressed the way I was. Not 5 minutes had passed since I crossed the ditch and this is what I spotted. The creek is on your immediate left. He was bedded down pretty good, so it was hard to believe that he just now crawled there since I passed. I gave him plenty of room, thanked the good Lord more than a few times, and headed on back, shonuff paying attention now. When I got past him, I turned around and took the third picture while standing on the catwalk. Didn't notice it until I looked at it later that you can see where my right foot came down practically against his side, and the left foot up and to the left from that. Yet another case that has left me wondering why He continues to look after this foolish, undeserving wretch.

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    I thought, well maybe it was just a harmless banded watersnake, which can sometimes look similar to a cottonmouth and I sure as hell wasn't gonna get close enough to find out. I showed the close-up to somebody who knows a heap more than I do who confirmed that it was a young moccasin.

  15. #15
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    Sandchip,

    You’re very fortunate. That’s definitely a moccasin and their bites can be quite severe, more so than a copperhead, so you’re lucky he was chilled. I’ve never worn snake chaps and I’ve had my feet within inches of copperheads numerous times. My belief is that venomous snakes don’t want to bite animals that they cannot devour. It wastes venom and explains why some of them exhibit bright colors or announce their presence (e.g. cobras rearing up, rattlesnakes singing, etc.).

    I’ve only had one venomous snake strike at me, and it was also in Breathitt County probably in 2003. I was heading downslope and stepping over a log and a rattlesnake shot out from under it, brushing my pant leg. I saw it happen lightning fast and he started rattling as soon as he recoiled back under the log. I jumped downhill probably 4’ past the log and my heart was doing some weird stuff. I nearly threw up from the adrenaline surging through me. After getting my wits about me, I decided that I was going to catch that (insert EVERY expletive here), so I emptied my clipboard, data sheets and maps out of my backpack and set it on the ground. I’d caught a couple before (I always release exactly where I found them, but I was thinking that this one might be dinner). I snapped a couple of sturdy branches off of a nearby tree and poked under the log until I’d forced it out. I tossed one branch to the side and pinned it to the ground at the neck with the other branch. I grabbed it around the neck, behind the head with my thumb on top of the head, carried it to my backpack and lowered it tail first into my pack. I then grabbed its head from the outside of the pack with the other hand, releasing it with the hand inside the pack, and held it there, using the free hand to zip the pack shut. Using another long stick with a short fork at the end, I made a hobo pack so that I could carry it away from my body. Then me, snake in hobo pack on shoulder, data sheets and maps headed for the truck and I took the rest of the day off. I showed it to some colleagues who are usually stuck in labs and don’t get to see cool wildlife as much and released it back in the same spot three days later. Its eyes were completely clouded over since it was about to shed, so I’m guessing it missed my leg because it was striking by heat alone. I’ve heard that they’re uncomfortable and more aggressive when getting ready to shed. That’s the only reason I didn’t eat that ornery (insert EVERY expletive here). Honestly, those things are amazing, though super dangerous. They’re incredibly strong and can even strike after they’re dead... seriously. They’re not something to underestimate.

    Kindest regards,
    Kantuck
    Last edited by Kantuckkeean; Jun 09, 2019 at 10:54 PM. Reason: clarity

 

 
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