When I was invited to present a Snake Program to a Boy Scout troop here in Asheville, last month, I was offered a wonderful opportunity to care for a Corn Snake by one of the boys preparing for his Eagle Scout ranking.
The boy has had “Rosie” since she was a young Corn Snake, but now found himself occupied with AP courses in his junior year, also music, sports and a myriad of other distractions that occur in high school.
I agreed to take Rosie, care for her until he’s ready to have her back in his life, and make her available as “Head Snake” at the Falling Creek Nature Center. Since she hasn’t been handled much this school year, she’s still a bit shy. I’m holding her at least twice a day, trying to remind her that people are okay critters!
By the time camp starts next June, Rosie should be cuddly once more. Remember, DON’T touch any furry creatures before holding Rosie. She’s a big, strong lady and might mistake you for a rabbit! (And yes, she’s big-enough to eat a rabbit!)
By the way, the garter snake, water snake, black rat snakes, rattlesnakes and copperheads I kept after camp was over are all healthy and preparing for hibernation during the next few months. I use them for a number of educational program during the off-season.
We’ll all see you next summer, down at Nature!
Steve Longenecker (sfl)