A feral woman's work is never done...

Okay, I always am upfront and no hidden novel here, sooo ~
this post is not for the squeamish and has nothing to do with wedding dresses, 
pretty sunsets or flowery flowers, and  I apologize in advance.

~But feral is as feral does~

please stop reading RIGHT NOW if you are squeamish.

I mean it! 


Alrighty then, 
lets move on ! 

For the rest of you tough cookies, heres the story behind the story...we came home late Wednesday night from timber cruising in the Black Hills, after tussling with poison ivy, bulls and ball bearings.  We came home for a much needed rest and of course to do some recreational blogging to self-medicate too... and to take a little walk yesterday afternoon in Baby and Sally's horse pasture to assess the weed situation after all the rains we have been receiving in Southeastern Montana... Unfortunately theres poison ivy, poison hemlock and leaf spurge running amok in small areas, waving their little green fronds at us, goading us, taunting... We are determined to win the battle though and plan to shut them down with 2 4 D  - pulling chemical warfare in a subversive organic way on them - a little organic chemistry joke there folks heh heh!  Laugh with us all you organic chemists out there in blog land! HAHAHeeheeHAHAHAHAheeheeHAHAHAahahahahaaa-sigh!!!! Anyhow,  unfortunately it keeps on raining though and so they continue to goad while they can. But we WILL have the last laugh...I digress...

So while we were contemplating this fact,  we find this guy. 
A Prairie Rattlesnake.  

80 yards from the house. 

photo by Mr. Foresterman
Mr. Foresterman was so kind enough to go into the house and get my Ruger .22 and snake shot, and his Marlin .22, while I kept an eye on this guy - but this part was sad really, as he was trying so hard to move away to the nearby rocks in slow motion, scale by scale, hoping I wouldnt see him...hoping I would sing my little " I love this place!!" la lee la song as usual and move on in my happy, stomping way. But as you and Richard Simmons can tell, he was obviously fattened up with field mice, and really didnt mean any instant harm - a good thing.  But  80 yards from the house and in with the horses- now thats certainly a bad thing. And since Martha Stewart knows what determines good things, I dont think she would argue with me on this one - so I can speak with authority  - it was a REALLY BAD THING.

Since I was using snake shot I needed to be close; no further then 10 feet at the most.  Mr. Foresterman was my backup, but my first shot seemed to do the trick. We cut the head off with a long shovel, and I buried it deep right there on the spot - even snake heads removed from their snake bodies have been known to still have the instinct to protect themselves, and will bite at whatever is placed in front of them. In fact even as i was holding his headless chubby body, he was still squirming and rattling...

"Hey you, the squeamish one in the corner!!! 
Why are you still here? 
STOP READING RIGHT NOW - we mean it!!! 
Click on one of my blogging friends blog links in the side column! 
Right now before you have nightmares about my clothing attire and non brushed hair!!! 

Okay then. 
Moving on,

He had 7 rows of "buttons" on his rattle, so he was older then a yearling.  
If they call snakes that. 

I have a somewhat tendency to describe everything - even child-rearing - in horse terms, so im not sure about that part... dont quote me. And as a side note, dont scar your children this way either.   Unfortunately I would initiate strange looks from pediatricians and teachers over the years while using horse terms and definitions to describe my childrens behavior... then I would frantically backtrack using plain english, talking slow, turning deep shades of dusty mauve followed up by a stammered "not quite myself today" as my closing statement. However it was the latter in the end that would elicit a puzzled but grateful look, and an agreeing nod from them, relieved that they wouldnt have to consider calling child protective services after all.  In fact Im pretty sure I am not the only one who is surprised that I actually am a mother... Im thinking my daughters are now too...Anyhow -

Here you can see the rattles close up, and the beautiful patterning on the skin...

 which kind of reminds me of a pine cone in a way ~

Can you see the similarity in the pattern and the color?  Last year, when I saw the Rattlers in the Black Hills, they were more greenish and actually reminded me of the lichen moss that grows on the rocks there. I wonder if their habitat determines their coloring? Something to look into ! In my free time! Sure! But after a nap...

 Tomez wanted to get up close to look too, but obviously theres a natural instinct to
NOT TOUCH this untouchable for all of us! Right Tomez? 
  and they yell at me when I do this to birds...
ah the irony... 

but hey, Im pretty sure I could fit this through my kitty door...


Some would make a belt, some would cut off the rattles, 
but we decided in the end that placing it on a rock 
for the Red-tailed  hawks and their babies 
would be a fitting way of disposal...

and be a warning to the others 
not to get so close to the HOUSE!


 Okay, off to bed so i can "self- medicate" blog tomorrow to show you what we have seen in the woods, and to catch up on everyone elses blogs! Unless something else pops up....I think Im going to check under the bed now....

Good night, friends!



  1. On one hand, I feel terrible for the snake..on the other hand, I sure as heck don't want a copperhead or eastern timber rattler wandering around my yard!!!

  2. His life would have been over here at the farmette as well! Can't have that close to the house.

  3. the kids and i received a rattler lesson not long ago from a baby one mountain man killed. when the body coiled after the head was cut off we all freaked out! =)

    and at the lodge we met a man who killed one and ate it...i mean really, some things i just don't need to know.

    thank you for all your great commens on the blog, they made my day!! =)

    have a great weekend~

  4. Feral I read this with my feet high in the air. You never know, this my theory.
    I am not a big fan of snakes, we do not have any poisonous ones where I live thank goodness. You are one brave Feral Woman.
    I like your hair it looks like mine most times.
    You do look tired so I hope your bed was comfy after you checked under it, my feet go higher. Rest well my friend. B

  5. Glad you saw him before he saw you, or the horses :)
    What I can't figure out is why they have rattler vaccine for horses and dogs but not people? That is something I am going to have to look up in my free time :)

  6. i guess putting his carcass out there for all to see is like when ranchers hang coyotes they've shot on their fence lines to warn other coyotes of a similar fate if they dare come in... :)

    glad you saw him first - and there better not be any others lurking for that sweet Baby and his little buddy!!!

  7. You look quite at home with that rifle on your shoulder... wait, you are at home, and with a rifle on your shoulder...
    No Snakes Allowed! I's really glad we don't have rattlers here.

  8. They are pretty.. but I'm with you. If they are too close they are goners. We haven't seen any bad guys out here, but in SC we had plenty of copperheads and occasional rattle snakes and a rare water moccasin. (Not that they are rare, there... just not usually around the house)
    Thanks for sharing...even with the goryness!

  9. Yikes! We have rattle snakes around our place but I haven't had the pleasure of seeing one up close yet....and I hope I never do!

  10. I'm with Button and add, Great Shot!!!!

  11. Eww dont want any rattlers or anything close to my house either. We dont have many around here, but lots of garter snakes and they are fine as long as they stay out of the house!

  12. I put the rattle snakes I find close to the house on a flat shovel and move them up the hill and let them go. I only had to kill one in six years and only because it threatened the dogs. From now on, if that happens, I have a bucket that I will use to cover the snake until I can safely remove it.

    Other than that, I visited you today to thank you so much for reading all those posts of mine and for leaving such nice and supportive comments. My stress mainly comes from financial worries and my hubby's and my health issues. But we are doing better in all regards. We have no TV and I don't read news anywhere any longer. I figure you can be excused once you are over 70! Thank you again, your comments were so sweet.--Inger

  13. Don't know that I could deal with as effectivley as you , but I agree, NO SNAKES allowed!


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