Snakes in the Hen House
August 9, 2010
Got somewhat of a rude awakening when I went to check for eggs the other afternoon. I usually get between 5 and 6 eggs everyday, but on Saturday, I did not get any. I had been out for most of the day, so did not get a chance to check them until the evening. That right there should have been a warning sign, but I thought that perhaps it had got too hot or something had spooked the hens during the day, causing them to not lay any eggs.
The next day, Sunday, I made a point to check the hen house a little earlier, going out there around 11AM. When I went in there, I found a black rat snake curled up in the chickens nest, feasting on an egg. As black snakes go, it wasn’t too big, probably only two feet long and not very wide. It was coiled around a cracked egg, having a nice old feast. All of a sudden, it was clear why I did not have any eggs on Saturday.
Now normally, I leave black snakes alone, as they don’t really hurt anything, but once they figure out there is a great free source of protein and nutrients in your backyard, namely chicken eggs, they can be hard to get rid of. So, this one was dispatched of.
I should have picked up on the warning sign on Saturday, when I did not have any eggs, as I know that snakes love chicken eggs. This would have better prepared me for finding the snake coiled up in the chickens nest. Even though I don’t scare easy, it still gave me a little jump in the time it took my brain to process what I was seeing and determine what type of snake it was.