It’s late fall. Snakes are supposed to be hidden away for the winter. The milk room copperhead didn’t get the memo.
Copperheads do live here. They like it down in a creek valley. We rarely see them as copperheads are shy snakes.
Usually the goats come across the copperheads. One or another will come limping into the barn with a swollen leg.
The afflicted goat mopes around in obvious pain. I called the vet the first time a goat was bitten. He assured me the goat would recover in a day or two. All he could do was give a steroid shot to take the swelling down.
Partially reassured I waited. The swelling went down a little by the next day and the goat insisted on limping out with the herd. Most of the swelling was gone that evening. Complete recovery took another day.
Years ago a copperhead haunted the hen house. After a few weeks, it was rarely seen. On those occasions, it was fat and brilliantly colored.
Copperheads are pretty snakes from a safe distance. The light copper background with the irregular copper bands make them unmistakable.
The milk room copperhead first appeared a couple of weeks ago. I turned from the feed barrel and started walking toward the far milk stand when the two foot long snake sped across the floor and disappeared.
Usually the six foot black snakes are the resident barn snakes. They reside under the barn floor. One definite reason to not have a raised floor in a barn is that the crawl space provides a home for numerous creatures, not all of them good neighbors.
Naively I assumed the copperhead was on its way to its winter headquarters. Snakes, from what I’ve read, have regular spots to spend the winters. The milk room copperhead didn’t get this memo either.
The snake slipped up from between the floor boards again. I’m hoping it hasn’t elected to nest among the hay bales for the winter.
Harriet learns to milk in Capri Capers. check out the sample pages.