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Snakes #9031371 04/09/24 11:25 AM
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Dave Davidson Offline OP
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The rattler pic by TBar interested me. I once was butt deep in snakes, mostly rattlers. I had a coffee can full of rattles. Then the pigs moved in and I have NO snakes. Several years back, I saw a rattler on a dirt road. I stopped, got out, and looked at it. Didn’t molest it.


Without a sense of urgency, nothing ever happens.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley, Rancher Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031427 04/09/24 02:07 PM
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We have plenty of snakes, but I don't go looking for them so I rarely see them. I've seen a few rattlers the last couple years including one that was 6ft long, but mostly copperheads on the caliche driving back from hog hunting in the early morning hours.

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031485 04/09/24 04:47 PM
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I had so many rattlesnakes I gassed them and would get a few thousand every year. I’m covered up with hogs now and haven’t seen a rattlesnake in 4 years. .

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031509 04/09/24 05:27 PM
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We've noticed the same over the past couple years at my buddies place south of Baird. About 4 years ago we killed over 20 just around the house and we weren't even looking for them. I don't really like killing them but if they're around the house they gotta go. Now they're non existent. This could be an interesting discussion. What would y'all rather have? Covered up in rattlers with no hogs or no rattlers with a bunch of hogs?


You may all go to hell and I will go to Texas! -Davy Crocket
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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031522 04/09/24 05:54 PM
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Here in east Texas the house is 100 yards from the pond, we have several other small pools around the place and woods.....I hardly ever see a snake. I mean its extremely rare.... but I have plenty of hogs.


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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031526 04/09/24 06:02 PM
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In Navarro County, we don't have much in the way of Rattlers. I know there are a few Timber Rattlers, but we almost never see them. Copperheads are a different story. Those have been extremely common through the years...but even then, I have not seen a single copperhead in over two years. It seems sightings of King Snakes and Rat Snakes has been on the decline too. The snake most often seen now is a common water snake. I'd love to blame it on pigs, cause that would give me just another reason to kill every one I see. But, I haven't seen a rise in pig population to coincide with a decline in snakes. I've actually seen a decline in the pigs over the last few year. I'd like to think that I have had a hand in that decline.


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Originally Posted by Nolanco
current federal policy is clearly irrational, scientifically insupportable and ridiculous.
Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031559 04/09/24 07:37 PM
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It’s not a mystery here. This was one of the most snake infested areas I’ve ever seen, hogs showed up and the rattlesnakes began their decline in numbers. I still have water snakes and snakes that spend a lot of time in trees but the ground dwindling snakes are almost completely gone. I like the hogs and I’m not a fan of being bit by rattlesnakes so I think it’s a good trade for me.

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031697 04/09/24 11:49 PM
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I hate snakes.



Re: Snakes [Re: 68rustbucket] #9031708 04/10/24 12:00 AM
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Originally Posted by 68rustbucket
I hate snakes.



I love snakes, hate spiders.

Kid's & I were running around Sat night rabbit hunting and I let a rattlesnake go, but only because it was a skinny snake and not worth eating. If that snake would have been fat, my little girl would have shot it and fried it up. Was fun anyway, my baby girl got to see her first live rattle snake and her first horny toad. clap

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031716 04/10/24 12:13 AM
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I was raised outside of Muleshoe and the horny toads we’re everywhere. Are they still in that country?


Without a sense of urgency, nothing ever happens.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley, Rancher Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9031736 04/10/24 12:49 AM
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Prefer hogs


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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9032215 04/10/24 11:42 PM
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Family has a Cabin at the Tulsa Ozark Club (NorthEastern Oklahoma....near Grand Lake).

I can remember when we were kids the caretaker of the property would release domestic hogs to roam freely whenever the snakes (mostly Copperheads) got too populous. It seemed to work....though I never really knew why.

I don't know if the hogs 'ate' the snakes but apparently the idea was that they would kill the snakes when they encountered one.

Anyone have anything other than anecdotal evidence for that theory?

Last edited by flintknapper; 04/10/24 11:43 PM.

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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9032220 04/10/24 11:58 PM
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Not evidence but; I used to be butt deep in snakes of all kinds. Then the hogs moved in. I’ve now seen one rattler in the last ten years. No others.


Without a sense of urgency, nothing ever happens.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley, Rancher Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9032307 04/11/24 10:08 AM
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Very interesting thread!! Following


Big Beckett!!
Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9032349 04/11/24 12:47 PM
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Got horned toads in Fisher County. This little fella was thrilled to hold one last spring at a Rolling Plains Quail Research Foundation field day near Roby. (Good outfit worth supporting by the way.)

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Last edited by Nolanco; 04/11/24 12:47 PM.
Re: Snakes [Re: skinnerback] #9032377 04/11/24 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by skinnerback
Originally Posted by 68rustbucket
I hate snakes.



I love snakes, hate spiders.

Kid's & I were running around Sat night rabbit hunting and I let a rattlesnake go, but only because it was a skinny snake and not worth eating. If that snake would have been fat, my little girl would have shot it and fried it up. Was fun anyway, my baby girl got to see her first live rattle snake and her first horny toad. clap


I'm happy to have non-venomous snakes hanging around. They're good workers. I can't express how much I loathe spiders though. My agreement with them is as long as they're outside the house I'll leave them alone unless I walk into their web. But if I catch them in the house it's game on. Can't stand the creepy things. I have a coworker who finds spiders at the office and will pick them up and release them outside. Uh no.

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9032931 04/12/24 12:00 PM
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I had an uncle who would gently detain and release black widows. But he was haunted by what he had done to life as the pilot of a B-24 that flew its full complement of combat missions in the Pacific Theater, and all life became precious to him.

Last edited by Nolanco; 04/12/24 12:00 PM.
Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9032949 04/12/24 12:18 PM
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No pigs on our place, but I killed one last weekend that rattled at me when I was still 25-30’ away from it. Pretty considerate of him

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9033124 04/12/24 04:24 PM
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I am still infested in Callahan County. Old houses and barns keep the mice plentiful and the snakes well fed. I kill every rattler I see (10+ a year) but let the rat snakes and a few others pass.

Re: Snakes [Re: Ramball36] #9033138 04/12/24 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Ramball36
No pigs on our place, but I killed one last weekend that rattled at me when I was still 25-30’ away from it. Pretty considerate of him

Had a 20 incher do that to me from across the shop some years back. I got over to him and he was in that half-coiled/half-standing strike pose and was ready to spring. This was in November and it was 40 degrees there inside the shop. Actually caught me by surprise.

Then he took a face full of rat shot and suddenly learned some manners.


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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9033255 04/12/24 08:19 PM
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Just yesterday I asked the wife if she had seen snakes of any type this year. She had not and neither have I. Used to have a good number of Copperheads, but apparently not now. We have a few hogs around, but not many, so I don’t think the hogs factor in to a decline in snake numbers.

The neighbor has chickens, and he has seen a few rat snakes.


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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9033459 04/13/24 05:15 AM
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We don't have too many rattlers in the areas of Montague County that I hunt, but I have come across 2 over the years. What we do have is bunches of copperheads. They are the most common snake I see and I will commonly see 2 or 3 every night on the gravel and dirt roads during warmer weather. If the hogs are eating the snakes, they have missed the copperheads where I am.

Originally Posted by flintknapper
Anyone have anything other than anecdotal evidence for that theory?


Cause and effect are sometimes hard to determine. A buddy of mine bought some acreage down near Hearne. It was overgrown and had a lot of snakes. So he got some goats and the snakes disappeared. Some people might think the goats ate the snakes, but generally speaking goats don't eat snakes. What happened was that the goats ate the snakes' cover. With the loss of habitat, the snakes moved elsewhere.

Of course, hogs aren't eating all the cover for the snakes. Plus, hogs will eat snakes and a lot of other stuff, but whether or not hogs would clear snakes from a given area is interesting to consider. I would think there would be other factors also involved to expedite the process, though hogs may be the most readily visible part of said process.

Originally Posted by Dave Davidson
I was raised outside of Muleshoe and the horny toads we’re everywhere. Are they still in that country?


I don't know if they are or are not, but horny toads were put on the threatened and endangered list for Texas in 1977, well before the hog menace. The reasons why were because of pesticides, fire ants, and habitat loss. If hogs played a part in horny toads going away, then hogs were likely a proverbial final straw on the weakened population.


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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9033477 04/13/24 10:54 AM
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I’ve hunted northwest Texas for the last twenty years….. no decline in rattlesnakes or hogs…. I have observed lots of both species…. never seen any evidence of hogs killing rattlesnakes….post it up or I call it bs


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Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9033490 04/13/24 12:08 PM
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I’ve been wondering what has happened to the snakes in East Texas. 25 years ago I couldn’t drive down the country roads without stopping to catch a snake. There were always snakes on the road. I very seldom see one on the road anymore. I don’t know it this is reflective of the number of snakes, but I’ve definitely noticed a difference.

Re: Snakes [Re: Dave Davidson] #9033547 04/13/24 02:26 PM
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I`ve walked upon 6 rattlers in all my years of hunting. Killed all of them. None of them have been small snakes, but this one is the biggest (2020). This one let me get within 4' before rattling and then coming out of the thick grass and going away from me. I was relocating a game camera and would have stepped on him for sure. I don`t know if our pigs help keep them in check, but I`m ok with that if they do. I never do any walking around on our lease without snake chaps when it`s warm and I will not walk on a trail that hasn`t been mowed short during bow season. I`m pretty sure we have a den in an old cellar from an 1800`s homestead that is caved in, but I never get around the area unless it`s really cold and after deer season. I give them the road the rest of the time.

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