Tuesday, April 29, 2014

A Snake of Another Sort


I like snakes. I have always admired them. We often have a kingsnake that visits the farm and also some smaller ones that I like to think are her babies. I had hoped I would never encounter a rattlesnake on our property...

But a couple weekends ago, my youngest son and I were camping and Max the dog allerted us to this. Even though I could hear the rattle, I kept hoping it wasn't so. I got closer and shined my flashlight on it. Yeah, diamondback rattler. If the dog wasn't as smart as he is, he'd have been struck. Thankfully, Max the dog lives to show off whatever he has cornered on the property. He circles and barks until his humans arrive. This dog just has the guardian instinct built in.

Maybe a braver person would have caught the snake and set it free elsewhere, but to me, this was a dangerous situation. Young child. Dog roaming the property. Livestock. I did not want this particular snake loose on the property. The risks were too many. I would have been putting myself at risk by attempting to capture it. I didn't have the proper equipment to do so safely.

So I had to make a decision that wasn't easy for me.

I don't watch a lot of TV, but my family does watch Survivorman and Dual Survivor. I've seen the people on those shows kill snakes many times. I've watched them skin them and cook them. And I feel that if a life is going to be taken, then it should not be wasted. I had an axe and I did my best to be quick.

So, I skinned the snake. I taught my son about the inner workings of it, pointing out the intestines and lungs. I gutted it. I washed the meat and...

I grilled it over mesquite and we even ate some. Nothing went to waste. I even salted the skin and brought it home to later cure with glycerin and rubbing alcohol.

I still can't believe I did this. I hope that through all of it, my son learned that it is not an easy thing to take a life, but sometimes it might have to happen. It should be done with reverence and respect. I didn't want to do it, but I truly believe that my dog would have come upon this snake another time...or one of my kids.

If you're curious, it did sort of taste like chicken. I seasoned the meat with season salt and garlic powder because that's what I had onhand in the camper. The meat was chewier than chicken, but it was good.

No comments:

Post a Comment