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OT: Hurray! the snakes are back

For years we had snakes living in the wall that held up the paved terrace. We saw them occasionally, sunning themselves in the rose beds or on the road below, always with a slight shock, though we knew they were harmless and got of our way even faster than we got out of theirs, I don't know what species they were, but they weren't vipers, which are the only poisonous snake in our part of the world. Well, last year one of our or our neighbors' marauding cats or our dog discovered that the snakes were easily caught and killed, and that was the end of them: we found snake bodies and snake heads, separately, for a time, and then that was that.

We missed them. I saw a pair mating once, twining round and round each other on the path. I saw one slither backwards into its hole in the terrace wall once. I hadn't known snakes could do that. Even DH, who started out believing that the only good snake is a dead snake, learned to like them--he was especially enchanted to see one gliding through bushes at eye level--and was sorry when they were exterminated.

Well, they're back. I heard snakelike slithering sounds under the rosemary recently, and yesterday I saw two, and perhaps even three, snakes, back in their old position under the terrace. They weren't babies: one was a fair size. I hope they've learned to avoid dogs and cats. I hope whichever animal it was has forgotten how much fun it was to slaughter them. I'm glad for our restored biodiversity. All is well.

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