Red On Yellow





Yes. Yes, this is what you think it is. You can finish the rhyme if you like…kill a fellow. Red on Black, friend of Jack.

I was unpacking book boxes with my brother in law’s girlfriend, Jessica, when Chris beckons from downstairs to come outside, quick! I’m expecting an animal but of the cute and furry type. Was a fawn in the yard? Did the kittens do something sweet? So, we barrel down the stairs and around the corner outside to where Chris is standing, pointing to the back side of our storage shed/carport/my art studio building. It was slithering up against the wall. My initial reaction was that of course this was a coral snake but having been fooled once in the wild with a snake actually being something different, we looked closer to make sure it wasn’t a king or milk snake, but no, it was definitely red on yellow. I ran back inside, hurriedly switching to my 100mm lens after not knowing where in the mess of boxes the 75-300mm lens was, and dashed back out.

The snake was rather mellow, easing around the building to the deck platform that the kittens hang out at. I was a little nervous for them, but Chris said the only reason he saw the snake was because the grey male cat was staring at the snake. He fears that one of the cats will kill the snake. We aren’t snake killers. If it isn’t bothering us we leave it alone. If it was inside my house that would be a different story and even then we would attempt to shoo it out a door. The killing of snakes is not something we look favorably upon, particularly due to the decline in venomous snakes in the U.S., such as rattlesnakes. I might look up a number to have the snake relocated if I saw it again because I’m not that keen on having it hang around the yard, but if it was passing through I’ll let it mind its own business. With all the rain recently I wouldn’t doubt it was displaced from its original home.

Honestly, I expect snakes living where we do, but I was thinking more of the water moccasin or copperhead varieties, both venomous as well, but something more expected than a coral snake.

While a neat and exciting find, I definitely don’t want to encounter them often!


  • chel

    Oh wow! I’m fine with snakes, but like you I wouldn’t want a dangerous one near my house- I’d try to find someone to relocate it. We have a lot of black snakes on our property and we leave them be.

    The weirdest experience I ever had with a snake was when I lived at the condo back in the early 2000’s. One day I was swimming in the condo pool and the guy who was laying (lying? whatever) on the sundeck suddenly jumped up and started screaming and running around. I was totally confused until I realized there was a snake moving at top speed across the pool deck, heading for the pool. The snake slithered into the pool and swam across the bottom and then slithered out the other side and made his way into the bushes.

    Boy, can they SWIM! It is surreal how fast they can move underwater. It startled me, but it was an interesting experience. I guess the guy didn’t like the idea of snakes hanging around the condo pool deck, but I’m always pleased when reptiles show up (as you can tell).

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