Tuesday, October 4, 2016
I went to the post office yesterday to get my mail. I saw a couple of kids playing at one end of the building. That is not unusual. There is a nice patch of grass there.
As I got out of my car one little girl began to peek around the building at me. She had a bit of a guilty look.
Then she said, "There's a snake here."
Because this area is known for its high population of prairie rattlesnakes I went to take a look.
The post office has those glass block windows set low in the ground. I assume that there is a basement down there but I am not sure. There are half moon shaped metal barriers to keep the ground from eroding down to cover the blocks. There is a layer of gravel to keep plants from growing.
When I went over there the little girl told me that they picked one up and it acted like it wanted to bite them. When I asked if any of them were bitten they said no.
I gave them a quick talk of rattlesnakes to make sure they understood how dangerous they are. They were surprised that they can bite and are venomous as soon as they are born.
Another little girl joined us. She had been searching for a grown snake they saw slithering away.
I looked into the area by the glass blocks. There were several little snakes rolling around in there. They were no bigger than a small earthworm. From the markings they looked like garter snakes.
We talked a while more. I tried to impress on them that they needed to know for sure what kind of snake they tried to pick up. I also let them know that all snakes will bite to protect themselves.
A man yelled out then and all three children scampered away. As they were leaving I told them to make sure they told a grown-up about the snakes.
As I drove around the corner I saw a couple of the fathers standing outside talking. I rolled down my window and told them about the snakes over at the post office. I told them that I thought they were probably harmless and that I had told the children to tell parents about them.
You never know with little ones. Sometimes they keep information to themselves to keep from getting into trouble.
It was so cold yesterday that I was surprised to see baby snakes (or grown ones for that matter). I have no idea whether the fathers decided to do something about them.
I think I will make sure to visit the post office tomorrow. They should know that the little places by the glass blocks are being used to breed snakes.