“Hey L, I met your bullsnake.”

Got back from the Monday morning water run. Headed for the Jeep with my water and groceries, and…


…had to chase a bullsnake out of the shade. I had no doubt this was the very snake L had told me about, that had been hanging around their workshop. L likes them and would not smile upon me for running this one over, even accidentally.

So I chased it out, but it was about noon and as soon as the front end of the snake hit the sun it tried to nope right back under.


And then, since it was being harassed by this inconvenient humie, it reared up and began to slither into the Jeep’s undercarriage. Which probably would have killed it, plus I didn’t want a creepy snake sharing the insides with me should it make it that far. So I did something I don’t remember ever doing before in my whole life…

I grabbed it around the middle, probably about 2/3 down from the front, and pulled it out of the Jeep. It actually doubled up and tried to bite me, for which I do not blame it, but by this point centrifugal force was not on its side. I gently flung it…


…out onto D&L’s plaza. It took the hint and boogied for shade in the vicinity of the workshop.

And it was no sooner out of sight than L came out of the garage so I could tell her the tale of how I went to some trouble and a tiny bit of risk to avoid harming her yard pet.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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15 Responses to “Hey L, I met your bullsnake.”

  1. Robert says:

    You’re a good man, Joel, for being considerate of one of God’s legless children.

    I have been informed there are seventeen varieties of rattlesnakes in y’all’s area. It’s a good thing you were sure of your identification. I’ve never seen a rattlesnake. The closest population (that I know of) is about 125 miles away and that’s close enough, thank you.

  2. Joel says:

    Yeah, in dealing with any snake the first thing I do is find the end of its tail. It doesn’t matter which variety it is, I don’t mess with rattlers. Though if you meet a stocky greenish one, be aware that’s a Mojave Green and pistols are not effective weapons against them, at least in the short term. Gunshots only make them mad.

  3. Robert says:

    Well:
    1) Thanks for the response.
    2) Holy Crap! Don’t tell me things like that! I can’t possibly CCW a 12ga. Too fat…

  4. Robert says:

    ETA: is .223 effective? 5.56? I really don’t have money/room for another caliber…

    OT: how’s the solar water heater adventure? I was gonna make a potato casserole for supper but Mr. Sun went away.

  5. “You’re a good man, Joel, for being considerate of one of God’s legless children.”

    Technically, Joel is one of those legless children.

  6. Paul B says:

    Joel is not legless, he is half legged. He should meet the checker at our local fareway(grocery’s). She has double prosthesis from knee down I would guess.

  7. Joel says:

    Technically I’m 3/4 legged. Not that it makes a lot of practical difference.

    Also yeah I’ve killed a rattler with a 5.56 and a hit is more or less instantly effective but the sight offset on the rifle makes getting that hit a bit of a problem.

  8. jabrwok says:

    Well, now you can add “snake wrangler” to your resume!

  9. Robert says:

    CZ: What? He lost another leg?

  10. Dave Mansfield says:

    Perhaps a shotgun. I keep my enemic 410 for just those enconters.

  11. Most herpetologists will tell you that a mojave is made up of the same physical stuff as a diamondback – and aside from venom and activity level – a bull snake. I can’t quite figure out any other characteristic that affects their ‘shootibility’ other than their temperment. Generally they’re more aggressive than diamondback. If that makes ’em a bit more bullet or 00-proof – then have at it.

    One of the quickest ways to recognise a mojave other than the typical greenish tint (not always reliable) is the banding on their tails above the rattle. Diamondback will have evenly sized alternating black and white bands. On a mojave one of the bands will be wider than the other. IIRC it’s the white one – but look it up for yourself if you just have to know. It’s late and I’m tired!

    Just in case you didn’t know… a snake severed at the head is still capable of moving and biting. They all appear hard to kill in that regard. That’s why people will bury a rattlesnake head after severing it – ’cause it’s still capable of biting for a number of minutes if not longer.

  12. Scroll down to ‘VIPERIDAE (Vipers)’ and you can pick your choice:
    Snakes of Arizona
    https://reptilesofaz.org/snakes-2/

  13. Bob says:

    I’m older now, but I used to read Cooper quite a bit. To paraphrase him: “ If you see the snake in time, you don’t need the gun, if you don’t, the gun won’t do you any good.”

  14. Joel says:

    I can’t quite figure out any other characteristic that affects their ‘shootibility’ other than their temperment. Generally they’re more aggressive than diamondback. If that makes ’em a bit more bullet or 00-proof – then have at it.

    I didn’t mean to imply any belief that Mojave Greens are somehow inherently bulletproof. The problem with pistols and any snake is that there’s so little meat there that a bullet icepicks right through into the ground. Unless you hit the spine you won’t even affect the snake’s mobility much. Doesn’t matter so much with Western Diamondbacks, which aren’t at all aggressive. But (in my experience) Mojave Greens are mean. Most snakes just want to be left alone: Greens will chase you.

    I discount head shots with anything but a 12-gauge, because this ain’t a Clint Eastwood movie. If you can get reliable headshots on a moving snake with a pistol I want to sign up for your course. A shovel always works better than any pistol on any snake; cut the head off and wait for it to stop trying to bite, and we’re done here. But Mojave Greens were one reason I decided to go to a bigbore revolver, because I wanted big slow bullets with the most cavernous hollowpoints I could arrange, in the hope that they would work better than .45 FMJ. They kind of do but it’s not a big improvement. I see a snake in my yard that needs killing, I mostly look around for a shovel or a hoe.

  15. Judy says:

    I can testify to the hoe for snake killin’.  My mother chopped a poor ol’ black snake into 6-inch links with a hoe.  The woman was terrified of snakes; she didn’t bother to identify the variety.  

To the stake with the heretic!