This is what I stumbled across (literally) this morning on my walk. It was glossy and black and probably 6 feet long. I’ve seen rat snakes before so I know that they are slow and docile although they look like evil incarnate. My large friend was too close to the road (trying to soak up warmth from the blacktop) and there are folks around these parts who like to run over snakes (any snakes) or beat them to death or participate in other fun activities resulting in the snake’s violent demise.
I had the dog leashed in my left hand so I didn’t attempt to pick up the snake and move it. It wasn’t striking but it was vibrating its tail in an attempt to mimic a rattler and I didn’t want to invite a bite even though these animals are constrictors. So I used a stick.
The snake was so heavy that the stick kept breaking. Eventually I was able to encourage it to go into a hole in a tree.
An hour later I came back down the road to find my snake back on the edge of the road. This time I was able to hook it on a long sturdy branch and fling it into the undergrowth. It was probably not happy with me but safer at least.
I’ve said before that I think wild animals should stay in the wild but I really wanted to bring that snake home with me.