*Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only, your responsible for your own actions. Please don’t try this at home without proper training and knowledge of local, state, and federal laws and wildlife.
The other day we saw a rattlesnake next to our house. It reminded me of the first time I’d seen one since moving to Kentucky. My son looked at it and said “nake, a yumm” and rubbed his tummy. I was still stunned that one was that close to the house, only 3′ away.
What you need to know About Rattlesnakes
- Quite possibly the easiest to identify
- Always poisonous
- They do not always rattle even tho they can
- The fangs can bite you even if the head is cut off and they are still poisonous
- Most baby rattlesnakes will give you more venom than a full grown rattlesnake
Living in the country I’m actually a bit surprised we hadn’t seen one before. The first year we lived here, we discovered a giant black snake which we ate and my son loved. It tasted like chicken, which begs the question; what does chicken actually taste like?
The first thing we did was kill the snake. You want to make sure the head is not attached and bury the head fangs down. You should do this with long sticks because the head can still bite you and the emergency room may be quite a drive if they even have the anti-venom. My husband used the shotgun, so there was nothing really left of the head, which is another great solution. If you don’t have a gun, and you’re very very brave (or stupid) you can pin the snake and cut the head off. I prefer not to get that close to live poisonous snakes without some really thick glass in between us.
The snake will continue to move quite a bit for 30-45 minutes afterwards and can still move after that but it will be less likely. I’m told this is because snakes move using muscle memory and fast twitch nerves, either way gutting a moving snake is something I find a bit disturbing so I recommend waiting 45 minutes to an hour to do so. The snake may still move then but it’s not nearly as creepy.
During this my son knew to cover his ears when we were shooting and to stand back from the snake until he was told it was safe. He knows not to touch knives and was quite fascinated with the whole process. We also taught him not to go near any snakes without permission. We used this as a home-school lesson as well teaching parts of the snake.
To gut a snake, you slice open the back (so you are less likely to puncture any organs) and pull them out. They are like a long string. Since this was a rattler we cut off the rattle to save. If you want to save the rattle simply cut as close to it as you can, and with tweezers pull out any meat that’s left. Then just keep it dry.
To cook the meat you can pan fry it but it comes out a bit chewy. We recommend baking it, poaching it, breading or deep frying it. Be careful when you eat it because they have lots of small bones like a fish, you can pull the meat off after cooking and make something else like an omelet or just eat it as is. Much like chicken you can do just about anything with it, maybe with our next I’ll make snake tacos.