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A walk in the woods

Discussion in 'Field Herping' started by jmclemens, Sep 18, 2004.

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  1. jmclemens

    jmclemens Active Member

    My girls and I went for a walk Wednesday afternoon. It was a beautiful day, Ivan was supposed to roll in soon, so we went out to the Blue Ridge Parkway and walked down an old logging road. It was a nice break, we walked until the road was blocked by a beaver pond. There used to be a log across the stream below the dam, but the storm the week before (Frances) must have washed it away. We saw lots of butterflies and chipmunks, but no herps until we were on our way back. We'd been walking about an hour and the girls were in front of me. I looked at the edge of the path, and thought, "That looks just like a snake..." I took another step and realized it WAS a snake. I said something idiotic like, "Oh, it's a snake!", but in a small voice. At that point the snake decided I was too close, and turned tail (hehe, get it?). It was rather large, about 3 ft, which is large to me, we don't grow them really big around here! It was brownish gray, with a stripe down each side, and a stubby head. Earlier this week I saw a tiny little ring necked snake, but it was only about 3-4 inches long. I did try to catch that little one, but it was too wiggly and skinny. I didn't try to catch the big one! It was still a nice ending to a lovely walk.

    Michelle
     
  2. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Wow what a great story! I wish we could go for a nice stroll and see a snake around here! It is becoming rarer and rarer to see our wild herps, and we are forbidden from touching or moving them. Joe saw a grass snake a few weeks ago on his way to work, and I remember seeing one when I was just a little girl.. i find wildlife amazing, but even more amazing when it's something you own as a pet and something that is not so often seen as you're taking a nice walk :)
     
  3. Jay DeMore

    Jay DeMore Elite Member

    Just seeing the snake is enough, when I do my educational talks I always stress that you should never pick up a snake in the wild because all snakes bite when scared and identifying a venomous vs. non venomous snake isn't that easy. But I bet you wish you had a camera with you.
     
  4. venus

    venus Founding Member

    Great, thanks for Sharing. I think Ivan is coming for me........ :eek:
     
  5. jmclemens

    jmclemens Active Member

    Thanks, everyone. We did enjoy our walk. Jay, I don't think I could have "captured" the snake with a camera, unless I was walking along with the lens cap off, looking through the viewfinder! Once he turned around he was hard to see in the tall grassy/shrubby vegetation at the edge of the road. You're right, though, about picking up snakes. If I hadn't instantly recognized that little one as a ring neck, I wouldn't have attempted to pick it up.
    I wouldn't like living in an area that didn't have a lot of wildlife for viewing. We get to see deer and turkeys daily without even leaving the house.
    Marsha, someone else told me that Ivan is re-forming in the Gulf. That is absolutely crazy! Ivan must be the storm from you-know-where.... Let's hope it fizzles.

    Michelle
     
  6. venus

    venus Founding Member

    I dont believe it will fizzle. It is estimated to hit our coast line tonight or tomorrow morning. Should just get lots of rain. :eek:
     
  7. jmclemens

    jmclemens Active Member

    That "just lots of rain" can really get you! Are you near the coast? Take care (of yourself and those beautiful beardies!).

    Michelle
     
  8. cman

    cman Elite Member

    Wow seeing a snake on a walk around here is very rare people up here in MN well where I live they see a snake and they think oh it might be a rattler so they kill it I cant stand it. you never know what ya had until ya lost it
     
  9. steveig2

    steveig2 Elite Member

    found a garter snake in the backyard today he wasent too happy about being picked up at first but calmed down after only took a strike at me once and then proceeded to musk me. i put him back where i found him and he went on his merry way.
     
  10. jmclemens

    jmclemens Active Member

    I finally got around to idenifying the snake we saw in the woods. It must be a queen snake. We weren't very close to water, but the photo shown on this site was exactly the same as the one we saw:
    http://www.banner-elk.com/index.php?subPage=40
    (the photo on the top left)

    Royalty! If I'd only known.... ;-)

    Michelle
     
  11. Jay DeMore

    Jay DeMore Elite Member

    That's a great find!! I've never seen one.
    (picture is from the NJ field guide)
     

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  12. jmclemens

    jmclemens Active Member

    Wow, they're endangered in NJ, I see. Now I really feel honored.

    Michelle
     
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