Looking back

‘Tis the season — snake season that is.  While walking to a shed in my backyard earlier in the week, I felt impressed to look back along the path I’d just walked.  Glancing back, I saw this snake outstretched, with his head held high and his tongue hissing.  Though not poisonous, it was, nonetheless, a bit unsettling to have such a close and unexpected encounter.  Today as I walked along that path, I knew to keep a close eye out for my new found friend.

“Look back, and smile on perils past.”  ~Walter Scott

An abundance of snakes

While walking around the boardwalk at Reelfoot Lake, we came upon a large number of water snakes that were swirling ferverishly in the water.  We were not sure at the time what we were witnessing, but have since found out that it was a breeding or mating ball.  In the spring, female snakes put off a pheromone scent which attracts males.  The male snakes then track the female, and a breeding ball occurs when there are many males competing over the same female.  In these photos, the female is the largest snake.

And since pictures don’t do the situation justice, here is a short video clip that gives a better idea of what a breeding ball looks like.

“Drama is life with the dull bits cut out.”  ~Alfred Hitchcock

Overflow

Due to heavy rains, the Mississippi River recently overflowed its banks and went beyond the tree line.  These photos were taken on the levee near Tiptonville, TN.

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Rain water also encroached on the land surrounding Reelfoot Lake.  This brought some animals in closer than they might usually come.

“Many waters cannot quench love, Nor will rivers overflow it …”  ~Song of Solomon 8:7