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good for you

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Posted by: 53kw at Mon Jul 11 20:12:36 2011  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by 53kw ]  
   

for appreciating these fine snakes. Watersnakes don't have a big following in the US. Most snake folks consider them to be snappy, smelly fish-eaters with little to recommend them. I like their attitude--they don't take abuse from anybody.

Wild Nerodia will bite and then deliberately bring their cloaca around to smear musk into the bite wound. The musk stings the wound and contributes to the unpleasant consequences of bothering a wild watersnake. I live in Michigan and some of the watersnakes that live in the Great Lakes grow to great size, nearly five feet, and massive. A bite and musking from one of them can leave a lasting impression.

I have a few specimens of the inland form, much more modest at around three feet maximum size. Mine are still young at around two feet. They have learned to eat defrosted mice and now attack these when I present a meal with large forceps. The snakes are fearless and ignore the forceps to snatch the mouse. They will also eat a dead mouse simply laid on the floor of the cage.

My Northern Watersnakes don't bite or musk although they are not comfortable being handled. For me, watersnakes are old friends from childhood, when I used to search for them in ponds and marshes near my home. Many happy memories associated with watersnakes and now I can enjoy their remarkable psychology and other attributes as well. One of my favorite snake species.


   

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