Guidelines: An Un-Eggs-Pected Find


By Simon Ambit

Earlier this spring, I read an article published by the DWR that spoke about how we may see an increased amount of snakes this year due to the low amount of water. They explained how in drought years, there is often a decreased amount of rodents; therefore, snakes have to cover more territory to find the same amount of food. Though I figured we would likely see a snake or two in the hay stack since it’s always a sure harbor for mice and crickets, it didn’t cross my mind that we would have the encounter we did!

With the bulk of the family working on a small craft project on the front porch, my young eight-year-old son sauntered out to the chicken coop to gather eggs. In a few minutes, he returned to the front porch. Waiting for a quiet opportunity among the different conversations taking place, he calmly chimed in with, “Um Dad, there’s a snake in the chicken coop and he’s trying to eat our eggs.” Expecting that he saw a garden snake, without looking up from the woodwork, I replied, “Oh yeah, how big is it and what color is he?” With an excitement this time in his voice, he said “It’s as big as me. It’s tan; and Dad… it shook its tail like a rattlesnake!”

My son had my attention! I put the project aside and out to the coop we marched. When I opened the door to our small coop, I was pretty surprised to find out that his forensic report was pretty accurate. Curled up in the egg box, was a tan, five-foot snake attempting to get an entire egg down its jaws. And at the other end, the tip of the snake’s tail was in the air shaking. Fortunately, it was a gopher snake (aka blow snake), not a rattlesnake.

After watching the serpent for several minutes, it was impressive to watch as it walked its jaws around the remainder of the egg. It seemed a futile attempt at first, but with time, unique genetic design and determination, the snake succeeded in the ambitious task.

It didn’t look too comfortable for the snake to be expanding and stretching it jaws out the way it did. I’m confident that a handful of crickets or a den of little mice would have been a preferred entrée. But, when that wasn’t available, he did what had to be done. I think we all come across situations in life as did the snake, where the odds seem insurmountable and at first it doesn’t seem like the task can be accomplished. But with practice and patience, determination and divine design, we too can do things that will bring success and satisfaction into our lives. Don’t give up on good goals just because something is hard. Life is good; go accomplish the un”eggs”pected!

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