they're killin' machines, but they ain't that smart ... they're deaf and the "taste-the-air" pits aren't
as fine-tuned as some snakes (not sure, but maybe all pit vipers are like that) ... but they see damn
well, and in infra-red ... they track and strike at motion and are a good judge of what they can strike
and kill and what they can't ... the only way a man is going to get struck is if he steps on or around
the snake in tall grass or something, surprising the snake to strike in defense (or, if he's a shitheel, and
fucking around, playing with the snake) .... the rattles are a good defense for scaring away potential
enemies, but a dead giveaway to a man ... cf the other night when I heard the bastard rattling on the
front lawn before I ever opened the door .... if he sees you before you see him, out on open ground or
in the rocks, he'll start rattling, which allows you ample time to stop and get still and spot him ... standing
still is the key ... he'll start to lose you in his regular vision, only seeing a big infrared heat register he
knows he can't kill ... so if you just stood still long enough, the snake will finally stop rattling, and move
off ... which would be fine, if I was only concerned for my own safety, but I got cattle and goats and
horses, and a pack of dogs and barn cats ... and the dogs and cats aren't smart enough to stand still ...
they jump around and swoop in and out around the snake, causing it to really get freaked out and finally
start striking ...
the snake this morning curled up and stayed still and watched me bear down him with a lawn tractor because
he was tracking on the movement toward him, and the heat of this big object ... running wasn't an
instinctual option ... the downside to snake-hunting with a mower is loss of usable skin, meat, and the
buttons get tossed away and busted up ...
short of a shotgun, which is the most effective and safest way to kill a rattler, my most common method
is to use whatever long handle tool I've got around; I usually carry a big eye-hoe when walking in the
mesquite, get some trail-work done and have it in case of snake ... you stand still for a while, get a
good look at the thing, let him calm down a minute and realize you're a big sumbitch and he can't kill
you .... I'll hold the hoe in front of me and slowly walk towards him ... you want him to strike at the
hoe blade, so you have to move it around, low to the ground, off to one side of your body, in case he
strikes long and misses the blade and comes close to your legs ...
you have to dance around a little when the fight starts, and be real quick ... the idea to get him to
strike the blade a few times and break his fangs, also a lot of venom will be released even if he can't
sink the fangs into something, so the more he strikes, the better off you'll be if he does end up getting
if I can, I try to hook him with the hoe and flip him up in the air; this tends to quicken the final stage
of the fight I'm aiming for, mainly the snake realizing he can't get away or kill me and going into his
total-protection mode: curling up tight and sticking his head down in the center of the coils .... when
he does this, he's not moving for awhile, and I can move it and give him a few good chops with the
sharp blade, hopefully enough to cut him in two ... this head-down, coiling-up response has been the
end of more snakes than I can remember, but I'm sure glad they do that .... if he stayed stretched out
watching and striking, it'd be a bigger gamble to wade in and try to chop him ...
I've discovered most dangerous shit in life is like that; yeah, it can kill you pretty easy, but if you
know how to deal with it, it can be handled ... rattlesnakes, high-voltage electricity, homemade
black powder canister shot, that crazy broad at the end of the bar, bindweed, it's all about the same ...
................ I exist only to amuse myself ................I personally feel that this message board, Jacurutu, is full of hateful folks who don't know
how to fully interact with people. ~ "Spice Grandson" (Bryon Merrit) 08 June 2008