An age-old battle

Zeedman

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Seeing a lot of full-grown garter snakes this year, both at home, and in the rural garden.
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It saddened me a little to see two "friendlies" battling... hopefully the snakes will help with the rodents too.
 

Ridgerunner

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Garter snakes also eat bugs, good and bad. Slugs too, who knows what else. I saw one eating a gecko earlier this year, also a good guy. Nature doesn't distinguish between good guys or bad guys, just who eats whom.

I'm glad to have them around here, non-venomous snakes are welcome. Hopefully they will eat more bad guys than good.
 

baymule

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My first thought was Oh no! Not the frog! But it is what it it is. Never seen a garter snake. Plenty of rat snakes and copperheads. A neighbor killed a coral snake in their driveway this week.
 

Ridgerunner

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My first thought was Oh no! Not the frog! But it is what it it is. Never seen a garter snake. Plenty of rat snakes and copperheads. A neighbor killed a coral snake in their driveway this week.
I don't like coral snakes, but I've never seen one in the wild.

Red touches black, he's OK Jack. Red touches yellow, dangerous fellow.

One of my garter snakes, taken this February. Looks bigger but maybe 14" to 16" long. The stripes look a little different from yours, Zeedman.

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baymule

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Aren’t horses idiots? Just askin for a friend....
They can be. My 34 year old Tennessee Walker mare has been retired for 10 years. I bet if I saddled her up and went down the road, she’d be as spooky crazy as she ever was.
 

flowerbug

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some snakes eat worms too. almost every creature out there that isn't a herbivore will eat worms. they're like the snack food of the omnivores and carnivores.
 

Zeedman

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It is encouraging to me that we are seeing so many full-grown garter snakes this year. I had just seen another big one in the garden, when DW called me to look at the one in the front yard. I've seen several in the rural garden too, after several years of absence. They will probably be hard on the resident toad population (as slow as those are), I hope they crawl into a few vole nests as well.
 

digitS'

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On my backyard gate, I once came across a lacewing larva and a ladybug larva heads together and locked in mortal combat.

I thought, Wow. Maybe I should intercede!

Knocking on the board with the knuckles of my hand, the lacewing immediately raced away to the bottom of the board. The ladybug sat there ... looking confused. It turned first one way and then the other. I didn't know if it was trying to locate its prey or injured. I wasn't sure if the lacewing appreciated an opportunity to escape. Anyway, I hope that both had a chance for life and would help me and the plants with the aphids that were blowing out of the tree, nearby.

The neighbor's cat was visiting the garden the last time I was out. Later, I visited another garden, helping the gardener pick her blackberries. Under the vines I came across what was obviously a vole burrow. They can be a real problem in my garden but I haven't even seen evidence that they are eating the tips of the bush beans, so often the situation (you talked about this elsewhere, Zeedman ;)). It may be the Wil E. Coyote taking out the voles and Benjamin Bunny offspring sure haven't been around much so I'm willing to credit Wil E. Not seeing any "diggings," I think it is Miss Kitty helping me with the voles.

I wish that she wouldn't be vulnerable to coyotes but hope that Kitty is brought indoors, at night. Haven't seen the owls this year but there is certainly history of owls carrying off cats. I had a friend who let her cat out on her deck one morning and while she was still standing there and before the cat even knew what was happening, an owl carried it off (never to be seen again)! Probably at 150% of the owl's weight ...

Steve
 

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