The Snake House


What’s worse than growing up in the Idaho countryside with an intense fear of snakes? Growing up to become a journalist who has to write about a house infested with snakes.  I set aside the initial shivers that ran up and down my spine when I found out about this place and tracked down the last couple who fled the “Snake House.”

They were still pretty traumatized, but kind enough to share the story of how they set out to purchase a home for their growing family, only to find they had paid good money for, as the wife put it, “Satan’s lair.

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One thought on “The Snake House

  1. Jim Hepler says:

    We had the same problem with rattle snakes somewhere around twenty years ago. The only difference was that the snake den was not under the house but. under the horse barn. with two small children it was a bit of a problem.
    We lived on ten acres of steep hillside seven miles from Wenatchee Wa. a basic “hobby” horse ranch.
    The solution to the problem was natural and rather simple but took about six months before becoming effective
    If you don’t believe this I will not be offended as it is still fun to tell the story and the old timers all agree that it was what they did years ago.

    1. Raise around twenty Guinea hens (bread to protect chickens from snakes and hawks.

    a. They do not have enough flesh around their legs to be affected by even rattle snake
    bite

    b. That many guineas will reduce any snake to bones in under sixty seconds.

    c. the down side is

    1. There won’t be any crickets or any other insects within a quarter mile radius.

    2. Guineas are great fliers but poor landers and a flock will knock a you to your
    knees if they are landing where you are standing.

    3. They make a horrible squacking call and can really upset the neighbors even 1/4
    away ( they fly all over )

    2. Dogs, especially fox terriers love to attack snakes, and after the guineas have reduced
    the number of snakes the dogs will have a great time. With a den of garters I would
    also turn Yorkies, Dauchands, Maltese, and any other breed that was developed to kill
    rats and mice loose under the house. The dogs will love the challenge and watching
    them work is a marvel.

    As a side note
    Years ago when I was somewhere around two or three, my parents raised a Rat Terrier
    as my constant protector from rattle snakes. We operated a ten acre orchard with a lot
    of rattle snakes. I sounds morbid ( as do most normal farm goings on in the past ) but
    one of our entertainments would be to watch “Spike” pounce on a rattlers head and spin
    around until the body separated from the head, then spit out the head.

    I am sure that someone would protest this as cruelty to snakes but it is natural and what the dogs and guineas were bred for.

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