A Surprise Guest at My Door

@moffittjc (58240)
Gainesville, Florida
August 3, 2019 7:40pm CST
This afternoon, after a little bit of cleaning, I went out the side door of the garage to put the trash out in the garbage bin on the side of the house. I wasn't gone but maybe 2 minutes, and as I return I see something hanging from the doorknob. Considering I literally just went out this door, I thought maybe it was a shoestring or other discarded item that had gotten caught on the doorknob when I went to take the trash out. But nope, as I got close I could see it was a snake. A freaking SNAKE hanging on my doorknob! How in the world did it get there in less than 2 minute's time? It really startled me at first, but as I took a step back, caught my breath, and regrouped, I stepped back in for a closer inspection and realized it was just a small rat snake. Being that I didn't have any kind of stick nearby or handy to pry the thing off my doorknob, I decided to just reach out and grab it with my hands so that I could toss it out into the grass so I could get back inside my door. Thinking it would try to quickly escape as I reached for it, I had to be quick. But to my surprise, the snake didn't try to escape at all. In fact, he was a very calm and nice fellow, and actually let me pick him up! He didn't try to get away, nor did he try to bite me or anything. He kind of just looked at me curiously as I held him in my hand. I thought, what a nice little snake. I'm going to be nice to you and put you down gently in the grass so you can be on your merry way! Of course, being the nice snake that he was, after I set him down he raised himself up and leaned toward me as if he wanted me to pick him back up. I patted him on his little tiny snake head and told him to go forth and eat lots of frogs and lizards and whatever else little rat snakes eat until they get big enough to eat rats and mice. I just hope Mr. Snake doesn't find and eat the praying mantis that @shybear88 found in her yard today!
31 people like this
30 responses
@wolfgirl569 (19939)
• Marion, Ohio
4 Aug
Maybe he was someones pet that they got tired of is why he was so calm. But it is strange that he was on the door knob. Still better than trying to run in the door when you open it. I had one do that last year.
4 people like this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
I referred to it as a rat snake in my post, but it is actually a ribbon snake. They generally don't grow much bigger than the one that was on my doorknob, and they are a very friendly species of snake. And speaking of snakes getting into the house, when I moved out of my old house a couple of years ago, when we went to move the coach we found a 6-foot long snake skin under the sofa. That really kind of freaked me out, because one, I had no idea how a snake that big could have gotten in my house, and two, I used to fall asleep on that coach all the time. Kind of freaky now knowing there was a snake as long as me living under there (or visiting).
4 people like this
@andriaperry (86393)
• Anniston, Alabama
4 Aug
@moffittjc at the old home place I used to find skins and I was always freaked out.
3 people like this
@wolfgirl569 (19939)
• Marion, Ohio
4 Aug
@moffittjc I would not like finding that at all. Glad you never seen it at least.
2 people like this
@kobesbuddy (79179)
• East Tawas, Michigan
4 Aug
You are a whole lot braver than I am! I would have never tried to touch that snake, even with a stick! All snakes are dangerous, from my perspective!
4 people like this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
This little guy was a ribbon snake, a very friendly snake and quite harmless. They are non-venomous, and eat frogs, lizards, toads and other pests. This is one of the "good" snakes, which is why I wanted to let him go in the yard and not kill him. God knows that with all the rain we've had lately that there are about 10 billion frogs in my back yard right now, so if Mr. Snake can help reduce that frog population down, more power to him!
2 people like this
@kobesbuddy (79179)
• East Tawas, Michigan
4 Aug
@moffittjc I'm just afraid of anything that doesn't have legs!
2 people like this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
@kobesbuddy Spiders have legs. You mean to tell me you aren't afraid of them?
2 people like this
@just4him (166278)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
5 Aug
That would freak me out to find a snake on my doorknob. I'd be running to the office, and I mean running and I haven't run in years, to get someone to get it off the doorknob. I'm glad he was a nice snake and didn't try to bite you when you put him in the grass.
2 people like this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
I wonder why most of us have such a fear of snakes? I understand if it was a big venomous snake, but why do we have fears of small, non-venomous and beneficial snakes? I used to be terrified of snakes, and then I asked myself why. I could not come up with any legitimate reason, so I stopped fearing them.
1 person likes this
@just4him (166278)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
5 Aug
@moffittjc That's good you're able to do that. I don't think they have any venomous snakes in Wisconsin.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
@just4him See, you have nothing to worry about then! No need to be afraid of snakes!
1 person likes this
• New Baltimore, Michigan
5 Aug
I read this entire thing just to make sure you didn’t hurt the snake. Turns out, you ended up making a new friend. You even named him. That’s awesome. And nice pic!
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
Thanks Melanie! Would you have been upset if I had killed the snake? I try to take care of God’s creatures as much as I can. That poor snake didn’t do anything to deserve to be killed. He was just being a snake! Lol
1 person likes this
• New Baltimore, Michigan
5 Aug
@moffittjc That’s RIGHT. Good for you.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
@Melanie_Marie I have respect for nature and creatures big and small. How are you? Haven't seen you on here in a while. How's your summer been so far? Any fun travels or vacations?
1 person likes this
@JustBhem (59874)
• Davao, Philippines
10 Aug
Oh, if it was me I go freak out.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
11 Aug
You mean you don't play with the big giant snakes over in the Philippines?
1 person likes this
@JustBhem (59874)
• Davao, Philippines
11 Aug
@moffittjc Nope. I will freak out.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
11 Aug
@JustBhem Haha, me too! I don't think I could handle any of the big snakes. I would run away screaming like a girl at the top of my lungs!
1 person likes this
@Deepizzaguy (20738)
• Lake Charles, Louisiana
4 Aug
I would freak out seeing a snake in my backyard.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
Snakes used to really bother me. I had a rather unfortunate and scary encounter with rattlesnakes on two different occasions when I was a kid (one 6-ft long and the other 7-ft long), and it kind of left me scarred. But for some reason I don't really seem to be bothered by them anymore. Regular snakes that is. Rattlesnakes would still scare the crap out of me! Nowadays, here in Florida, it's the 20-ft long pythons we have to worry about!
1 person likes this
@Deepizzaguy (20738)
• Lake Charles, Louisiana
4 Aug
@moffittjc I have yet to see any snakes in Southwest Louisiana.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
@Deepizzaguy You've got to have moccasins in your neck of the woods. Surely there most be some in Louisiana.
1 person likes this
@porwest (17347)
• United States
8 Aug
You were much braver than I in this situation, despite his being rather docile. I used to be an exterminator and dealt with all kinds of critters from skunks to racoons and opossums to rats and mice, spiders, ants...you name it. I worked for a company called Batzner Pest Management. When someone asked me how we dealt with snakes, I said, "Call Orkin."
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
10 Aug
That's funny! I would think that with you being in the exterminator business, you wouldn't be afraid of any of these critters at all. What's the worst thing you ever had to deal with?
1 person likes this
@porwest (17347)
• United States
11 Aug
@moffittjc Probably the skunks. We would use smaller, squirrel traps so they would not have much room to maneuver. Then we'd as calmly as possible go towards them with a tarp to place over the top of the trap, and slowly wrap it to avoid them getting spooked enough to decide to spray. They had to be dispatched since there was no real practical way of releasing them. My preferred method was drowning.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
11 Aug
@porwest I was in Home Depot last night with my son and we saw a guy at the front checkout with a pet skunk. He said it was the best pet he ever had. And of course he said it's spray/scent glands had been removed. But right there in the store, the thing was just hanging out on his shoulder, and was just as friendly as it could be when we approached it. A couple of years ago, when my son and I were camping in some remote wilderness, it was a freezing cold night one night and we were sitting by the campfire trying to stay warm, when all of a sudden out of the bush comes a family of skunks! They waddled right up the fire next to us and just kind of hung out and checked things out. And then after a few minutes, they went on their merry way!
1 person likes this
@bunnybon7 (41829)
• Holiday, Florida
10 Aug
wow. I had heard they were friendly but would have never had the nerve. Glad you learned something new and had this experience with it.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
11 Aug
I had mentioned in my post that it was a small rat snake, but upon closer examination I discovered it was a ribbon snake. They are very friendly snakes, and like to eat frogs and lizards. I like snakes much more than I like frogs and lizards! haha
1 person likes this
@bunnybon7 (41829)
• Holiday, Florida
12 Aug
@moffittjc not me. I like frogs and lizards . they are cuter and don't bite
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
12 Aug
@bunnybon7 I don't mind frogs and lizards, but when you have 4 billion frogs that live in the meadow behind your house who croak in unison all night long, it tends to drive you a little crazy. A few frogs I can handle. A few millions frogs I can't! haha
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (235628)
• Switzerland
4 Aug
Oh my goodness, I would have had a heart attack, I cannot stand snakes, I could never touch a snake.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
But Anna, they are so beneficial! Would you rather have a bunch of rats and mice in your garden and home, or one snake that eats them all? I'm not particularly fond of snakes either, but I'll take a snake over a rat any day!
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (235628)
• Switzerland
4 Aug
@moffittjc I have two rat snakes in my garden, that I respect and I try NEVER to meet them.
2 people like this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
@LadyDuck As long as you and the snakes have a mutual understanding, you should be fine. You stay away from them, and they keep your garden rid of all the pests. It's a nice symbiotic relationship!
1 person likes this
@infatuatedbby (103022)
• United States
11 Aug
I would have screamed and left the snake there. No courage for me to grab the snake to help it down back in the grass. Glad it worked out. I'm guessing the snake was on top of the ledge and fell down as you opened the door maybe?
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
11 Aug
There was nowhere overhead for it to drop down from, as the door was under a covered porch. My first thought when I saw the snake was "How was I going to get inside with that thing hanging there?" But then I realized my front door was locked, so I had no other way in except through the back door, so I had to make a decision on whether or not to kill the snake, or somehow capture it and move it out of the way. When I saw how gentle it was, and that it was not the least bit afraid of me, I just reached out and picked it up. It was a very friendly snake. It was a ribbon snake.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Aug
@moffittjc That was one sneaky snake. Glad the snake was gentle for you to handle. I would stand there for help
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
11 Aug
@infatuatedbby Trust me, when I first saw the snake, that same thought crossed my mind!
1 person likes this
@flapiz (10175)
• Philippines
6 Aug
It’s a beautiful snake. How did he end up in your door knob? It seems like someone is plotting to get rid of you . You are so fearless so I’m guessing this snake is not the poisonous kind.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
6 Aug
I have no idea how he was able to get up to the doorknob. But he did it somehow! And it is a beautiful snake, isn't it? I called it a rat snake when I wrote my post, but in truth it's a ribbon snake, a very gentle and harmless snake that likes to eat lizards and frogs. And I certainly have plenty of lizards and frogs around my yard!
1 person likes this
@flapiz (10175)
• Philippines
6 Aug
@moffittjc I think maybe it fell from a tree if not purposely put there. Are there trees nearby? You have a natural exterminator in your yard then. I wonder if it has family hiding somewhere. We do need snakes to exterminate rats. People of the past tried to exterminate all the snakes and ended up with the bubonic plague. Now we learn to maintain the balance in nature.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
7 Aug
@flapiz The door is under a covered patio, so it couldn't have dropped down from a tree. And I agree that we need to keep a balance in nature to keep everything healthy. And speaking of plagues, I hear there is a Dengue Fever epidemic going on in the Philippines right now. Are you worried about getting it? And what's the best way to protect yourself from getting it?
1 person likes this
@HazySue (31243)
• United States
4 Aug
I don't care what kind of snake it was, I would be running away. I certainly wouldn't touch him.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
Haha yeah, I understand. I used to be terrified of snakes like that.
1 person likes this
@HazySue (31243)
• United States
6 Aug
@moffittjc Still am, always will be.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
6 Aug
@HazySue I’m not going to fault you for that. I feel that way about roaches!
1 person likes this
@ShyBear88 (28542)
• United States
4 Aug
Me. Snack your not suppose to you doors silly. Your suppose to slide I through the door when nobody is looking. I’m sure he won’t find the praying mantis since they are so far a part.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
He's going to get plenty to eat with all the frogs we have here right now. With all the heavy rains we've had, there are like a million frogs everywhere. Mr. Snake is going to be feasting like a king for a long time!
1 person likes this
@ShyBear88 (28542)
• United States
4 Aug
@moffittjc good thing for Mr. Snake.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
@ShyBear88 I hope there are several Mr. and Mrs. Snakes around, because there is plenty of food for them!
1 person likes this
@LindaOHio (8499)
• United States
4 Aug
Little snakeys are nice little critters; and they eat bugs and stuff. I'm glad you let him go so that he could eat insects and other nasty things in your yard.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
5 Aug
I usually have a bad frog problem due to the meadow and creek behind my house. All those frogs are so loud when they start croaking at night. Mr. Snake must be doing a good job this year, because I hardly hear any frogs now.
1 person likes this
@LindaOHio (8499)
• United States
5 Aug
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
10 Aug
@LindaOHio Of course, no sooner had I made that comment, I started hearing all the frogs again. Maybe I had just tuned them out before, and talking about them made my brain tune them back in! lol
1 person likes this
@kareng (16154)
• United States
4 Aug
Yep, ribbon snake sounds more like it. Rat snakes are much bigger. I do not like snakes. Of course, living out in the country we see a good many snakes.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
Yeah, it was definitely a ribbon snake, but I pretty much call all friendly snakes rat snakes. You know, just because I hate rats so much and want all the snakes to eat them! haha
1 person likes this
@kareng (16154)
• United States
5 Aug
@moffittjc I'm so glad my girls never wanted a snake for a pet. I wouldn't be able to handle that or allow it in the house. Those people must be from another planet.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
7 Aug
@kareng My best friend's daughter has a ball python for a pet. She was telling me about it the other day. She is always going to the pet store to buy frozen mice to use as food for the snake (they thaw the mice out to room temperature before feeding it to the snake).
1 person likes this
@DianneN (125331)
• United States
6 Aug
SCREAM! I am terrified of snakes. It doesn’t matter how tiny and non poisonous they may be or how nice. I’d have to enter the house another way and stay indoors for a good three weeks. That’s happened before.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
6 Aug
I’m definitely like that with roaches! I will burn down a city to kill one roach. If you ever want to see me scream like a girl, just put a roach in front of me!
1 person likes this
@DianneN (125331)
• United States
7 Aug
@moffittjc Now we know each other’s biggest fears. We don’t have any roaches, but I would rather have them running all over the house than see one snake in the yard.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
10 Aug
@DianneN I would absolutely die if I was in a room full of roaches crawling all over the place.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (166624)
• Bunbury, Australia
8 Aug
You're pretty brave. I wouldn't be doing that. I'm glad he was so calm.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
10 Aug
I'm probably not as brave as you! With all that property you have, I'm sure you've dealt with some pretty interesting creatures in your time!
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (166624)
• Bunbury, Australia
10 Aug
@moffittjc I ran over a snake once near the house. About ten minutes later I went out and it was next to the car. It had got caught up under the car and came home with me. Vince held its attention while I disposed of it.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
12 Aug
@JudyEv How in the world was that thing still alive if you ran it over? And how did you end up being the one responsible for disposing of it instead of Vince? Was he afraid of it? haha
1 person likes this
@Hannihar (69428)
4 Aug
@moffittjc What he really wanted you to be his friend.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
He can be my friend as long as he continues to eat all the lizards and frogs around my yard!
1 person likes this
@Hannihar (69428)
4 Aug
@moffittjc That makes sense then he would be a very good friend to have.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
10 Aug
@Hannihar As long as he and his other brother and sister snakes don't bother me too much, I have no problem living as neighbors with them. But if they start showing up on my doorstep regularly, well then we might have to reconsider our relationship! haha
1 person likes this
@andriaperry (86393)
• Anniston, Alabama
4 Aug
Just No! I am not touching a snake, no matter the type. I had one in my kitchen in June after being gone for 4 days.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
Well, since you won't touch snakes, how did you get that one out of your ktichen?
1 person likes this
@andriaperry (86393)
• Anniston, Alabama
4 Aug
@moffittjc I did not! Tony did with a shovel.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
@andriaperry Did he kill it, or just scoop it up with the shovel and take it outside?
@Tampa_girl7 (32556)
• United States
4 Aug
I'm petrified of all snakes.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
4 Aug
A lot of people are. And rightfully so. I used to be that way too. But as I've learned more and more about them, I've come to realize that they are very beneficial in controlling pest populations around our homes. I'm telling you, I would rather have one snake in my yard than a house full of rats and mice.
1 person likes this
@Tampa_girl7 (32556)
• United States
11 Aug
@moffittjc rats petrify me too.
1 person likes this
@moffittjc (58240)
• Gainesville, Florida
13 Aug
@Tampa_girl7 Yeah, petrify is a good way to describe it. I'm that way too when it comes to rats.
1 person likes this