Before we launch into pictures, I have a little story to tell. One lovely summer morning, I let the dogs into the back yard, where they immediately started barking. Looking outside, we see a big, fat rattler right next to the trampoline, coiled and hissing as the dogs danced and barked around it. I ran outside, screaming to be heard over the barking, dragging the dogs back inside to safety. I shouted at the girls to keep an eye on the snake. I don't take any joy in killing snakes, but when they are so close to the house, they really have to be dealt with.
Did I mention Mark was already at work?
So...I have the girls call Mark for guidance, while I go hunt down the .22 (in a secret spot), and the ammo (in a different secret spot). I had shot the rifle before, so in theory I was prepared. However, that was several months prior. At a paper circle 50 yards away. When I wasn't all amped up on adrenaline.
The rifle looks basically like this:
If you know anything about guns, you may already see what's coming.
That scope thing on top? NOT meant for shooting things 15 feet away. So I couldn't see through it to sight on the snake. Also, all I had were regular bullets, vs shot. Apparently, you have to be a pretty good shot to hit a snake with a bullet. Which would imply that you could see the snake in the first place!
SO...this was a big fat snake with a looonnnnggg rattle. Which I will interpret as a sign of being old and wise. The crafty beast went and hid in a spot where it was very difficult for me to shoot him. He hid under our travel trailer. So now I'm down on the ground, trying to poke/throw him away from the trailer with a long stick. And I'm sweating and grunting and cussing, and occasionally getting a shot in before he sneaks back under the trailer.
Finally, he went down a hole. And I was surprised to find a trail of blood behind him. So hopefully he won't come back.
So now I can tell the rest of the story. As you might guess, I was not happy with our snake-defense capabilities. So we came upon plan B, snake shot in a hand gun. And by golly, we were going to practice in a more realistic way!
The girls drew some targets for us.
Hopefully Mae's giant viper (on the right) will stay only in my nightmares! But I can still aim for the head.
We laid them out on the ground, just like where we would find a REAL SNAKE.
And we loaded the shot. We all took turns.
Mae looking tough.
Abigail shows her handiwork.
We got to see how the shot would hit a snake. Next time, now that we have THE RIGHT STUFF, hopefully I'll be a little more prepared!