Wednesdays are Date Night for us. Last night was great, with a good dinner at an outdoor venue, some quality time of catching up with each other, then going to bed together for the first time in a week (I'd been out of town on a CWR Staff development trip -- photos from that later!), but when we went to sleep, we had no idea we'd be awakened by our little dogs chasing a coral snake out of our bedroom!!!

When I walked out to the kitchen and flipped on the light to see what they were barking about, I saw Sophie (our rat terrier) cornering a fairly large coral snake under a chair next to the bedroom door. A little hazy and freaked out, I went to find shoes and something with which to whack the snake, only to find upon returning that the snake was nowhere to be found. A 3-hour midnight search followed, aided primarily by Sophie's excellent nose and hunting instincts, and concluded by prying away a single baseboard next to Claire's nightstand and hacking the snake's head off with a machete.

Moved stuff out of my gear closet

After losing track of the coral snake and looking all over the house, our dogs were whining at my gear closet door, so we looked around but couldn't find anything, so started taking stuff out a little at a time. When I moved the last plastic shelf, we saw it sneak behind one of the rubber base boards that was a little loose.  This photo is all the stuff we took out of the closet... about an hour and a half into the search.

Hunting for the snake

Looking into my now empty gear closet where Sophie (our rat terrier) was determined the coral snake had gone.  She earned herself some awesome treats last night!

Ripped off baseboards

Note the tiny gap between the drywall and old carpet tack strips, where the coral snake slithered into the wall of our bedroom.

Finally found it!

Again, it was our rat terrier, Sophie, who found it.  When we were about to give up (almost 3 hours into the hunt), she perked up and focused on one small section of wall behind my wife's nightstand.  I had the wife watch the hole in the other room while I pried baseboard and carpet tack strips off.

Note color pattern. Definitely a Texas Coral Snake.

Dead Coral Snake

Well, it started crawling into a different hole in the wall, and I just had to start hacking to be sure it wouldn't go to another impossible location.  Note my wild machete strikes on the wall... oops!

(gore warning) Coral Snake after head-chopping

GOT IT!  We felt relieved, but I was sad to have to kill it.  I wish I had come up with a good way to snag it and send it back outside. :-/

In the end, we spent from about 12:30am to 3:30am finding and exterminating this crazy snake, and neither of us slept well afterward.  It was a weird night.

"MILLER" Alphabet Project