Black snake climbing river birch, and wild turkeys

November 1, 2020

Words are great but pictures even better.  We’re so blessed with wildlife in Sussex County.  It never ceases to entertain and help us marvel at the beauty of nature.  

The first photo here - taken by Chris Flood - shows one of the fattest and healthiest black snakes I’ve ever seen, climbing the peeling bark of a river birch outside the Cape Gazette offices at Nassau Commons. She was sleek and fat and made her way effortlessly and miraculously straight up the river birch trunk.  I have no idea what she was after - all seven feet of her - but she made short work of the tree.

I used to feel sorry for snakes, with no hands or feet, but seeing this I realize they have thousands of tiny hands and feet giving them the ability to climb as well as any other of God’s creatures. Cawood used to say a snake would eat anything it could get its hands on. I guess so.  Reading on the Internet about black snakes taught me that these are constrictors, like boas, squeezing their prey to death before swallowing them head first. They take care of lots of mice, frogs and moles.  

Nature, as beautiful and miraculous as she is, definitely does not care.

The other photo shows a flock of young turkeys I spotted last week grazing along Freeman Highway on the beach side of the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal. As wily and keen-sighted as wild turkeys are, they sure can be wacky.    


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