I haven't written anything about killing snakes for a while because the last 3 were so small it hardly seemed worth the trouble. Bill killed 2 of them and I one, all right around the chicken yards. I wish I was brave enough to let them live, because maybe they could make a dent on the darn ground squirrels. Every day we have to refill and tamp several places under the fence or wall to EACH chicken pen. THe chickens won't run them off, and I think the ground squirrels actually eat more chicken feed than the chickens do. ANd then at night, the mice come out and finish off what the ground squirrels and/or chickens have left.
Back to the snakes. We just can't leave them alive around this populated area because they might bite us, or the dogs(more likely) I did get Robin vaccinated against rattlesnake venom, but it only lasts 6 months, and she got huge knots on her side at the injection site. So we didn't have it done to Sammy. And I have not yet taken them to a place in Cave Creek that snake-proofs, as Sammy is too young, and besides, I spend all my extra money on Robin's allergies.
So the 3 little ones we killed were no big deal. They were so little they didn't even know how to coil up and rattle.
HOWEVER, last night we were feeding and replenishing waterers, etc. and there was a BIG rattler curled around the wading waterer in the Cornish pen. Bill was lucky to see it when he reached over to up-end it to clean it out. Big fat thing. He dispatched it with a shovel, and we put the head in the barrel but left the body there to see if the chickens would eat it. I still don't know; it was gone this AM when I let them out.
We also had a dust storm, a power outage, and a brief heavy rain last night. We managed to drop and break the chimneys from 2 different oil lamps and need to do some serious clean and repair to the burner on one of them. We had enough chimneys though, as we have wall sconces we don't use in the summer (the candles melt) and the chimneys are all interchangeable. I like oil lamp light for knitting, even if it does put out quite a bit of heat. THe power came back on in a couple of hours for a change, and we finished out the evening without further excitement.