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BellaLuna
May. 20, 2012, 04:39 PM
Just even typing this makes me want to let out a bit of a girly scream. :eek:

I found, what I think are several snake holes in one of my pastures. There looks to be 3 or four holes about 2-3 inches each in diameter. Do horses have a 6th sense about them and stay away from them? I'd love to get rid of them, but, I know all of the lectures on "black snakes are our friends, blah, blah blah." I don't even know what kind of snake would live in them, I've never seen one out there. Could it be a snake hole or some other vermin? Please don't beat me up because I'm so afraid of snakes. I will come over and take care of your spiders, mice, rats, heck, I'll even stitch up a gaping bleeding wound, but, I am terrified of snakes. Even in pictures.

Any advice?

Thanks.

Alagirl
May. 20, 2012, 04:45 PM
I think some did not get the memo.

I believe Bluey had a story or two about horses being bitten by snakes.

Sonesta
May. 20, 2012, 04:46 PM
Here's a website to help you identify the animal that makes holes in pastures.

http://icwdm.org/inspection/groundholes.asp

They don't show a photo for the most common hole found in pastures, which is that dug by crayfish. So, if the hole looks like this, http://www.dpughphoto.com/crayfish%20hole%20durham%2032607%202_small.JPG, it is a crayfish.

The holes in your pasture are unlikely to be a snake holes. While snakes do sometimes go into other animal's holes (to catch and eat them and sometimes to den up in their dens), they don't have feet to dig with.

BellaLuna
May. 20, 2012, 04:51 PM
No, they are more into the dirt, without an outer lip.

And Alagirl, you are correct. I did not get the memo about Bluey's snake experience. I did do a search on this and couldn't find what I was looking for. Care to share?

BellaLuna
May. 20, 2012, 04:52 PM
Sonesta, thanks for the link.

Alagirl
May. 20, 2012, 04:53 PM
No, they are more into the dirt, without an outer lip.

And Alagirl, you are correct. I did not get the memo about Bluey's snake experience. I did do a search on this and couldn't find what I was looking for. Care to share?


LOL, the horses not getting the memo to stay away from snakes. :lol::lol::lol:

not you about Bluey's snake stories.

Sorry bout that. :)

cloudyandcallie
May. 20, 2012, 04:59 PM
All of my lifetime horses, except one notable exception, have been afraid of snakes. One time decades ago, a snake was near the barn and my 2 ottbs smelled him and went wild.

Callie and I came back to her stall after riding to find the resident black snake in her stall. She didn't like that. ANd that snake was once stretched out in her water trough in her paddock. She refused to go near it. Same snake, who was supposed to be eating rats, wiped out the wren babies in their nest in the barn. Rats flourished up in the hay loft.

Cloudy was always "hanging out" with the black snake and was not afraid of him. I did not want to see what would happen if a rattler appeared. Plus the then barn cat, now housecat, would try to get the snake in paddocks and that black snake would rear up as if to strike.

So Mr. Blacksnake was dispatched. One boarder was afraid of snake and ran out of the barn everytime the snake was around.

2Jakes is a snake expert, and she has a thread on coth about snakes. Ask her any snake questions as she is on the venom team at Miami-Dade Fire.

My mother grew up on a farm in SC. She has always said that only good snake is a dead snake. Due to the high percentage of times we've found snakes in birds' nests eating the eggs or chicks, we dispose of them. 2Jakes and my friend Lucy both have pet snakes, but I'll pass on them as pets.
Once when I was a kid I got home from church to find my siamese cat's face swollen up like a canteloupe. Presely had "caught" a snake and had 2 bloody fang marks on his nose. Presley survived, but well, with horses and cats and dogs, best to not encourage snakes to hang around. The song bird loss around here is great.

cowgirljenn
May. 20, 2012, 05:09 PM
No, they are more into the dirt, without an outer lip.

And Alagirl, you are correct. I did not get the memo about Bluey's snake experience. I did do a search on this and couldn't find what I was looking for. Care to share?

Some of our crawfish/crayfish/crawdad holes don't have the outer lip, either, but I'm pretty positive that's what they are.

The website was most useful, though - because we have some I haven't been able to identify, and this will help!

netg
May. 20, 2012, 06:15 PM
We think one of my horses was bitten by a snake and only partially envenomated. Had the vet out to give her shots, put her on antibiotics, etc. It never got as ugly as snake wounds can get, but she has two permanently bald tiny circles where we suspect it hit her. Luckily it was not on soft flesh where fangs could sink in.

I know my TB isn't afraid of snakes, as we saw several around when I had the horses boarded and he didn't care and I had to steer him away from them.

Marla 100
May. 20, 2012, 06:25 PM
My curious 2 yr. old was following a large water mocassin along the fence line as it was trying to escape my shovel. She definitely had no fear, unfortunately.

oldpony66
May. 20, 2012, 08:14 PM
My gelding is hyper-aware of snakes. He will stop dead on the trail about 100 feet away from a snake. I am OK with this, of course! The part that irritates me is that he is also scared of a garden hose. I guess I can't have it both ways!

Janet
May. 20, 2012, 08:26 PM
Mine don't seem to be afraid of snakes.

Music had one "living" in her stall. I found a nest of snake eggs under the bedding in the corner of her stall, and I often found a black snake stretched along the sill of her door.

When we have come across a black snake on the trail, both Belle and Chief have hesitated momentarily, then carefully stepped over it.

qhwpmare
May. 20, 2012, 08:35 PM
While leading my horse down the driveway he stepped on and killed a snake...never saw it !

wildlifer
May. 20, 2012, 10:07 PM
Sorry, snakes don't dig holes. It's pretty hard to do when you have no legs. And they much prefer to live in among tree stumps, brush piles, under cover boards, etc.

If it's a small hole in open pasture area, it is most likely a crayfish.

And in my ten years so far working as a biologist, about 95% of people can't identify snakes correctly, even to separate a venemous from a non-venemous snake. If I had a quarter for every time someone said to me, "I know my snakes and THAT is a cottonmouth," while pointing at a harmless watersnake/rat snake/ringneck snake (that lady was really special), well, I wouldn't have to work anymore.

Internet stories aside, I would not worry about your holes. And please don't go chopping things up with shovels, they don't really want to be near you either.

Thank you!
Your friendly neighbourhood biologist

candysgirl
May. 21, 2012, 01:08 AM
The only time I've seen my horse around a snake, he pummeled the living daylights out of it with his front feet when it tried to cross in front of him on the trail. It was interesting to ride out, that's for sure!

Then again, he's generally speaking in "kill all the things" mode. He's tolerant of the hounds at the hunt, dogs that leave him alone and the barn cats, but unfamiliar animals that act in any way that he perceives to be threatening are generally pummeled into the ground with his front feet. He has killed a coyote in that manner and that snake. He's tried to get several idiot neighbor dogs who were biting at us while we were riding on the road. I didn't want to explain that one to the neighbors, so all I let him do was kick with his hind legs (he's far less accurate and deadly that way!) until they went away.

carolprudm
May. 21, 2012, 10:11 AM
As I was turning Sophie out yesterday evening Mr P said "There's a black snake in the garden" Sure enough, a 3 footer was sunning himself. We stood there admiring him while Sophie totally ignored him.

They do eat eggs....if they could wipe out my sparrow population I would be thrilled

BellaLuna
May. 21, 2012, 12:29 PM
Sorry, snakes don't dig holes. It's pretty hard to do when you have no legs. And they much prefer to live in among tree stumps, brush piles, under cover boards, etc.


Internet stories aside, I would not worry about your holes. And please don't go chopping things up with shovels, they don't really want to be near you either.

Thank you!
Your friendly neighbourhood biologist

No worries about me chopping up things with shovels, at the sight of any snake, I drop what I am holding and run screaming away. And needing an underwear change. Seriously.

But that's good news for me and the herd that they don't dig holes. I don't know why, but I thought that they could. Never heard of crayfish, will do more investigating for pictures.

Thanks to all for the feedback.

wildlifer
May. 21, 2012, 04:33 PM
No worries about me chopping up things with shovels, at the sight of any snake, I drop what I am holding and run screaming away. And needing an underwear change. Seriously.

Thanks to all for the feedback.

ROFL! Well, I guess that does save the snake! There are many different species of crayfish, some dig holes with chimneys, some with a mud "lip" and some with no edge at all. The burrows can be amazingly deep and complex, I always wonder where all that mud goes! They are definitely non threatening though -- even when I am trying to dig them out for surveys, they cower in the very back and make me dug up 20 yards of ground before I get to the end!

Janet
May. 21, 2012, 04:41 PM
OK, I am confused.

I thought "crayfish" lived in the water, not digging holes in dry pasture.

SanJacMonument
May. 21, 2012, 05:30 PM
Crawfish chimneys are to catch a breeze and clean the air in the hole. But they can only make chimneys when it is muddy...if its dry, it's just a hole. They eat the roots of grasses and come out at night when it's cooler.

If you want to get rid of them, pour a 1/4 cup of bleach down the chimney/hole, and close it up.

Ember
May. 21, 2012, 06:25 PM
My mare was bitten on the nose by a rattlesnake. It is not uncommon at all out here.

It was pretty horrific for the first 24 hours. Her head blew up to about 3 times it's normal size. We had to stitch tubes down her nostrils so that she could breath and one of them got clogged in the middle of the night.

It was amazing how fast she recovered though. After 24 hours on the anti inflammatories and steroids she looked almost normal.

bird4416
May. 21, 2012, 07:18 PM
My mare got bitten by a copperhead. It got her right above the coronet band with one fang. She came up to the gate while I was standing nearby and I could tell she was lame. When I got to her I saw a small trickle of blood on her hoof and swelling around her pastern. As I walked her into the barn to check out her wound, I could see the swelling moving up her leg.

I called the vet and he came out and gave her a big dose of some kind of broad spectrum antibiotic and some anti-inflammatory(not sure what). He had me ice the leg on and off as best I could for several days. Her leg swelled all the way up into her shoulder. I bought a hip wader and cut the foot part out, duct taped it around her hoof and filled it carefully with ice and water. After she got over the initial weird feeling, she was good about standing like this. After a few days, the swelling went down and she has been fine.

She is uneasy if she sees a snake and stays well away from them but my other horses aren't bothered by them at all.

wildlifer
May. 22, 2012, 11:07 AM
Correct, you will get a massive swelling response, but with response and attention, the horse should recover none the worse for wear.

pj
May. 22, 2012, 12:45 PM
OK, I am confused.

I thought "crayfish" lived in the water, not digging holes in dry pasture.
Me, too. All the creeks around here are full of them. I thought they stayed there forever.

Sonesta
May. 22, 2012, 05:17 PM
They need water to live and will die if they dry out, but they can burrow down a LONG way to reach water/moisture. Some burrows are more than 20 feet deep. So, they dig down and find the water.

And if you notice the dirt around the outside of the hole, it was obviously very wet when it was deposited, so it DID reach water.