Monday, December 28, 2015

The Twelve Snakes of Christmas. 12-25-2015

For the first snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A Garter up near Old Reliable.

The second snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A Garter on the way to Sly's Den.

The third snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A sirtalis coiled atop Sly's den.

The fourth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A wee Garter in the valley.

The fifth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A large Nerodia.

The sixth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A small Water Snake on the hill.

The seventh snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A speedy camera-shy Garter.

The eighth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A periscoping Garter by the path.

The ninth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A wee Garter stretching at the Eastern Cottonwood den.

The tenth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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Another Cottonwood sirtalis beauty.

The eleventh snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
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A Garter guarding the entrance to the Valley of Nerodia.

The twelfth snake of Christmas, my true love (and I) did see
Christmas Garter
Sir Musk-a-lot.

Sir Musk-a-lot
One Garter Guarding
Cottonwood sirtalis
Wee Garter stretching
Periscoping Garter
Camera shy sirtalis
Small Northern Water
A Large Nerodia...
Garter in the Vally
One atop the den
Garter on the way
and a Garter near Old Reliable.

OK, for the sake of the song, I left out a few things. It was 60° and sunny on Christmas day. We went to the obvious place to see Christmas snakes and, obviously, we weren't disappointed. Our first herp was an S-shaped Redback under Old Reliable.
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But yeah, then it was hot and heavy with sirtalis. The first guy (near Old Reliable) was the earliest we'd ever seen a snake along this path. The large Water Snake was the same one that we had seen the day before. The Garter basking on Sly's den is a guy we've seen before. (Sly himself?)

Also of interest, Andrea fell on her bum before finding the periscope guy.
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The Garter guarding the Valley wasn't really doing a great job as Andrea was able to pet his head.
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Sir Musk-a-lot earned his name because I picked him up (kind of against my own rule for this time of year) to show a mother and daughter who were asking what we were photographing. He nailed me good... been saving that load since September, I'll bet. Worth it, as we had a nice talk with them and showed them the basking Water Snakes on the hill.

So, Merry Christmas. Best... Christmas... Ever!

We have decided to not herp at this spot anymore this year (unless it is viable on New Year's Eve) because, really... it kind of feels like cheating. That said, if we can get a New Year's Eve snake, it will put the "latest snake in the year ever" thing to rest forever.

2015 has had its ups and downs but it sure has been ending on an incredible note.

3 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. FELIZ AÑO NUEVO, MARTHA!!!!!

      Love, Mike and Andrea and the grandkids!

      Delete