Rural Lifestyle

Life in Rural America

Tag: chicken snake

Leaving a Rat Snake in the Chicken House

Texas Rat Snake

This may seem counter-productive, but two rat snakes have been allowed to stay in the chicken house. Usually, if a rat snake (aka chicken snake) is caught in the chicken house, it is dealt with with extreme prejudice.

However, awhile back a good size rat was spotted in the chicken house. For those of you who do not know, one of the worst creatures that can be in the chicken house is a rat. Not only will they eat the chicken feed, but the will kill chickens. Yes, a rat will kill and eat part of a chicken.

When it comes to pullets, which are chickens less than one year old, a rat can easily kill and eat one. Then there is the egg issue. Rats will eat whatever eggs they can.

Simply put, a rat in the chicken house can wreck havoc.

A live trap was put in the chicken house to catch the rat, but it kept getting out of the trap. Poison is out of the question. Old style spring loaded rat traps are also out of the question. What’s the next best thing to do? Let nature take its course.

In other words, let rat snakes do what rat snakes do.

Rat Snake in the Chicken House

My New Adversary The Chicken Snake

chicken snake

My new adversary and I came face-to-face this morning, and it was not a pretty sight.

On the morning of May 27, 2013 I went out to check on the chickens and rabbits. Before the chickens were let out of the coop I walked to the end of the run to make sure it was closed. Took a couple of steps over to the rabbit hutch, looked up, and within arms length on top of the hutch was a chicken snake looking straight at me. The rabbit hutch is 8 feet long, the snake was almost the length of the hutch.

The first thing I did was take a couple of steps backwards, reminded myself that cotton mouths do not climb, then went into the house to get a camera. What good is a story without pictures.

My wife grabbed her camera and started taking pictures.

The snake seemed to be looking for a way to get into the rabbit hutch. The rabbits seem a little big for the snake to eat, but you never know.

Before I could get a rake to get the snake off the hutch, it had retreated to the safety of some brush.

If being face-to-face with a chicken snake was not bad enough, I found a second snake just a few minutes later.

Kevin Felts © 2008 - 2018