Saturday, February 26, 2011

Spring is Coming!


Back when Sean still lived at home, there would be an inevitable morning, every spring, when Marianne called from the open back door, "Sean, come quick -- the slugs have returned!"

And there they would be, those hideous slimy, garden-eating pests, oozing through the yard like animated snot.  While Marianne and Sean jumped up and down and cheered them on.

I lead a hard life.

Me, I'm a snake man.  Love 'em.  So you can imagine how happy I was yesterday to see an early sign of the advent of spring -- a snake in the back yard.  This tiny darling looks to be a baby garter snake.  (Though I'm no herpetologist, alas, so I could be wrong.)  It was resting atop the bale of straw we bought for Halloween decoration and plan to spread over the garden soon.

So spring is coming, thank God.



Jonathan Crowe said...

If I'd known you were into snakes, well. Snakes are my thing. Especially garter snakes.

I'm not completely certain of the ID, but if I had to put money on it, I'd probably call that one a brown snake, not a garter. (Eastern garters are pretty variable in coloration and pattern, so I can't rule that out either.) Your slugs and worms should tremble in fear.

Some people have all the luck. I have to pay good money to get snakes in my home.

Lars said...

Have to agree with Mcwetboy - the medial dark chevrons impinge upon the mid-dorsal stripe, which you don't see in garters at all, as I recall. Haven't seen a Storeria in over 30 years, though, and I have to say that the head does seem a lot more garter-like than I recall.
In any case, congratulations on this sign of Spring. We won't be hearing the chorus frogs here for at least another month.

Bookmama said...

As far as I'm concerned, there are two types of snakes: deadly and poisonous. My library will most likely be visited by snakes this week as part of a children's program. I intend to spend the time either hiding out at Town Hall, or in my office with the door shut, sitting on my desk with my feet in the chair, in case the snake(s) get away and come after me.

David Stone said...

Slugs have no place in a civilized society. Especially one that gardens. Even more so one that grows vegetables. There can be no peace between mankind and slugs.

Matthew Brandi said...
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Shawn said...

I never met a slug who liked salt. I must admit to this seemingly wanton cruelty, although in my defense I was much younger (around 10 or so) and did it out of curiosity rather than a maniacal urge to kill something. In fact I did feel a slight pang of regret when I saw said slug shrivel up and then turn itself inside out. Also, I think there was some foaming? It was long ago, and not nearly as fun as catching grasshoppers and putting them in a big spider web and watching as the spider dashes out and rolls it up like a Bob Marley would roll a joint!