Encounter with a venomous snake

I’m still traumatized even though it was three days ago. We’ve had snakes in the garage before, but this time it was a venomous copperhead. Our daughter or I could have been bitten and ended up in the hospital.

While grandson Ben and his dad were out of town on a youth group trip, our daughter K. came to visit for the weekend. She arrived late when it was already dark outside, and she and I made a couple of trips back and forth to the car to bring in the things she brought with her. On K’s last trip through the garage she saw movement out of the corner of her eye and came flying back into the house yelling, “snake!” The snake was close to the steps that lead into the garage from my laundry room.

The garage light was on, but it isn’t very bright, and the snake was in the shadow of the car. So we stood inside and shined a flashlight through the glass in the door trying to see what kind of snake it was. It was a copperhead, not a large adult but not a baby either. Experts say the young ones are more dangerous because they always release their venom when they bite.

After much deliberation and shaking like a leaf and feeling as if I were having a heart attack, I opened the door, grabbed a push broom with a long handle and shoved the snake. I had to get it out of there, and I didn’t know what else to do. It went under the car. Why I walked along the side of the car with a flashlight in my hand and looked for that snake, I don’t know. I feel terrified just thinking about that now. The snake was nestled against the front tire on the driver’s side.

I entered the passenger side of the car, climbed over the center console to the driver’s side (which isn’t easy, and I’m no spring chicken), and started the car. Yes, I killed the venomous snake. I drove over it and then backed up over it again. Then I came inside and felt guilty for killing it.

The next morning I had to remove the carcass. Even though the snake was absolutely dead and was squashed flat, I screamed the entire time I was picking it up with a shovel and carrying it across the driveway to the woods.

I thought that writing this might make me less afraid. I hope it does. I don’t like feeling traumatized.

Here’s a photo of the squashed copperhead. The markings are very distinctive…


And because I can’t end with that, here’s a photo of something pretty to make me feel better…

14 Comments Add yours

  1. Jenchaos says:

    I would never have gone in the garage again! I hate snakes! You are great!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! It still frightens me just to think about it. I now carry a walking stick with me just in case. I call it my “snake stick.”

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I’m sorry you had to be scared, but man! What an ingenious way of getting rid of it.

    I wish I lived closer to you and I could have come and helped you. I used to be afraid of snakes but I learned a lot about them, and where I live now, we have so many I am just used to them. Since we have chickens and goats, we have livestock feed, and that attracts bugs and mice, and those attract the snakes, I think that’s why we see so many.

    Just so you might feel a little calmer, I have had a lot of encounters with copperheads and they have all been non-aggressive. I have stepped right over them and not seen them until my foot was on the way down, and they just laid there. The only bad thing that happened was that one of my dogs was nosing around one in the brush, I heard him and called him off but too late. He did get bitten, but he lived and is fine. I’m not trying to tell you you shouldn’t have been scared, but I hope this information helps keep you calm the next time.

    Because you live in the country, so there will probably be a next time! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much! I have realized after the fact that this one was non-aggressive. I just freaked out. And I do feel badly about killing it.

      Like

  3. de Wets Wild says:

    I’m incredibly thankful that you and your daughter are unharmed, Deb!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I appreciate that. I know that copperheads are generally non-aggressive, but I also know someone who was bitten by one and nearly died.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. cindy knoke says:

    I nearly stepped on one in my garage wearing flip flops. I was terrified of them, but am less so now, after my son caught, studied and released them in graduate school. I helped with the release. They are afraid of us and want to avoid us. That said, they still scare me and in the garage is truly scary. The trick is to always look where you are going during snake season. We also wear rattlesnake boots, but not in the garage, but you could have put them on when you dealt with the snake. There are snake grabber sticks too which we have. You grab the snake with it, and it is kept far away from you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my! You are much braver than I! I could not help with releasing snakes. I generally do watch where I am going, and I stay on cleared pathways and even walk the long way ’round to get to our mailbox rather than walking through the grass. I just never expected a copperhead in the garage at night, I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. mliae says:

    This sounds like a nightmare! How terrifying a surprise waiting for you there :/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m still wary of entering the garage, and I look at every step I take. But I’m even afraid of non-venomous snakes.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. simplywendi says:

    I am so very sorry this happened to you. Although I am not very scared of snakes, I am TERRIFIED of spiders. I had to kill one in our house because no one else was home and I screamed like a maniac the entire time. I hope you are able to to recover from the event, something that scary can take a bit.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much! Funny, but I’m not afraid of spiders. I capture them and take them back outside. But snakes are a very different story!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. simplywendi says:

        🙂 i understand!

        Liked by 1 person

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