In the two years that we’ve been hunting at the ranch in South Texas, Deerslayer has killed 4 sizable rattlesnakes, the one pictured being the smallest. Living with snakes is just part of life down here. It was after finding the first and largest rattler that the fine line between fashion and function became blurred to include Cabela’s jaunty and ever-so-chic snake boots. I’ve come to appreciate the rich earth tones, the fashion-forward suede and zippered accents, the fact that I can walk through the grass and not be killed by a snake bite..
The largest rattlesnake that we’ve seen on the ranch was as long as Deerslayer is tall, about 6’5″. The shortest was about my height, 5’4″. Spotting a venomous snake really brings to mind thoughts of instinct, self-preservation, and survival of the fittest. The heart starts to pound. Breathing becomes fast and shallow. I found myself sputtering things like, “Run over it with the truck! Run over it again! It’s still moving. Shoot it. Squash it with a rock. No, use a stick. Don’t get close. It’s still moving! Run over it again. Shoot it again! It’s still moving!”
I suspect that in earlier times, I wouldn’t have been considered one of the “fittest”.
Back to our most recent encounter, before Snakeslayer placed the slithering monster in the back of the truck, the head was removed. While I’m sure everyone knows this already, it bears repeating: A dead snake is just as dangerous as a live one as long as the fangs are intact. People have suffered serious injury and, I’m sure, even death as a result of snake bites from snakes that were already dead. Don’t mess with the head of a venomous snake even after it’s dead. The mouth can still open of its own accord. Nasty business, just don’t! That said, let me continue.
The rattler continued to writhe and thrash about, headless, for at least an hour and a half. With the tailgate down, it slithered off the back of the truck. When Snakeslayer decided to save the skin, there was quite an episode. The decapitated snake thrashed, and wrapped itself around my beloved’s arms as it was being “dispatched”. My job in the proceedings was to gesticulate wildly and suggest poking it with a stick or perhaps run over it with the truck, or shoot it again.
It made for interesting stories to share at the hunting camp that night. I was asked by several of the other hunters whether I was going to cook up the snake. I guess I better start looking for recipes. Everyone had their own stories to tell. Eyes got big, smart phones were brought out and pictures passed around. Arms stretched in all directions to indicate size and length. When referring to snakes, I guess size really does matter. There’s just something about big snakes that reminds us of our place in the grand scheme of things. Thank God for snake boots!
Multi-award winning food blog, written in Dublin, Ireland.
Wild Game Recipes from a South Texas Home Cook #feedingmrbootsparma #eatmorejavelina #mrsbootsmedia
a very particular book blog
Tips, information and insights about MEAT, FISH and POULTRY. Got questions? I have the answers. Subscribe on YouTube at Carnivore Confidential
A blog by avid beginners.
Hobbies, How To, and Humor
Two Men, Two Pits and a Blog
an ongoing work of fantasy
~And it is always eighteen ninety-five~
We would always get a few when we dove hunted around Abilene. I’d shoot the head’s off, throw them in a ziplock and then place them in unsuspecting laps. It’s a wonder I wasn’t shot. The best is when I’d leave them in my aunt’s freezer for a few months, and she’d wonder what was in the brown bag…
Not cool, man! Deerslayer laid one across the steps of the camper and enjoyed asking an elder to grab a beer from inside. Luckily, everyone is still alive to chuckle over the story. You guys!
Eek this sounds really scary! I can’t even imagine what a snake that big would look like, slithering across the ground… And the rattler on the tail is impressive too, although I’m very glad that the scariest thing I’m likely to find in my garden is my partner!
Watch those fangs!
I read this in my email this morning while we waited our turn to drive out onto Lake Winnebago. It made me want to get out of the truck and kiss the top of the 37 inches of ice in thanks for winters that prohibit venomous snakes in these parts. Eek. I’ll hold non-venomous ones but hoooooly no, venomous things scare me silly. Let’s say the few times I went to Arizona I was very, very vigilant.
Yeah, I guess the fact that we’ve had so many days above 70 degrees in the dead of winter is almost as scary.