Rattlesnake, brown recluse, black widow: Texas warm weather is popular!

Hope nose day 3

Day 3 after snake bite, with treatment

All the poisonous Texas creatures have come out to say good-bye to us! Yes, goodbye. We are packing up to move ourselves to Ohio and Pennsylvania for a few months.

I already suspect that I’m going to miss the weather here in Texas. I love the sun, blue skies and lack of mud…but some menacing creatures like warm weather too.

I realize that I could be over reacting to meeting these critters. You must keep in mind that I grew up in the state of Maine; way east and way north…where there was NOTHING poisonous.

Monday started with a rattlesnake or copperhead bite on the nose of our horse, Hope. If you watch the video you can see her eating although she is swollen. Also look at the before and after photo where you can see a huge improvement. Much of the swelling is reduced but the part of her nose that is still swollen feels very solid, like hard rubber. The skin is starting to look like it has a sunburn. It is also possible to see a slight discharge from her nose. No worries, she is already on antibiotics. Her body is still working to heal though.

Brown recluse

Brown recluse…an entomologist said yes.

Wednesday, while I was exiting the shower, a brown recluse fell into the tub from the shower curtains. See the video…

Later that same morning my husband went to open a door in the barn and found a black widow spider…yep, it is in the video.

People who have grown up around these things seem to be more comfortable, or at least more accepting, of the idea that these things are nearby. Once we have spotted them I am ok with taking photos or video…it is the nasty surprise that I don’t like.

After the snake bite our horse is noticeably jumpier now but I think I might have her beat!

Black widow waiting in the barn

Black widow waiting in the barn

So far in Texas we have seen a tarantula, rattlesnake, bobcat, armadillo, road runner, brown recluse, black widow. Apparently these critters also enjoy the warm weather!

Check out this video where I managed to capture video of several of these creepy-crawly things!


  1. Kay Jeffries on June 20, 2014 at 8:32 pm

    Left you a message on Jesse’s FB page.

  2. Anna on June 20, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    It is amazing how the horses remember. My gelding was bit on the nose when he was two and is very leery of snakes still, he’s 16. He gets anxious. We had one go through the corral and he wouldn’t eat, that is how we knew it was there. He also almost dumped me right near a black timber rattler because he saw it before I did and wanted to get out of there! Not a fan of the critters.

  3. Colleene McMurphy on June 20, 2014 at 10:23 am

    I’ve lived my entire life in Texas as did five generations before me. I grew up knowing about such things and they are just a part of life here. That’s why we wear boots 24/7, leather gloves when we work, and always carry a gun when we hike or ride. Call me crazy, but I wouldn’t live anywhere else.

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:35 am

      The weather is soooooo nice here that I can see why! I think I could get to be ok with the critters. It seemed kinda funny that we have been here for 4 months and now everything (except scorpion) has decided to say hi…although I am sure the warm weather is the cause.
      Texas has been great and it will stay on the list of places to settle down when we do buy. San Antonio is one of the most beautiful cities I have ever been to and I know Fort Worth reasonably well. I love all the history and outdoor stuff to do here.
      You are not crazy…and if you are I am considering joining you:)

  4. jeshales on June 20, 2014 at 10:18 am

    body{font-family: Geneva,Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;font-size:9pt;background-color: #ffffff;color: black;}

    -Stacey, Where are you in Texas and where are you going? Jes Hales

    • Stacy on June 23, 2014 at 3:21 pm

      We were in Bowie, Texas from Feb until now. We just drove back to Ohio for a show and then on to Pennsylvania for a month or so.

  5. Brenda on June 20, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Cowgirl up! 😀

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:36 am

      Lol…I’m not taking Texas out of the running of places to live! The weather is so nice I think I could Cowgirl up and do it!

  6. Linda Snyder on June 20, 2014 at 6:21 am

    I grew up in So. CA, we had these critters, not as prevalent as TX, but you constantly had to watch out. We moved to OH 15 years ago, although the weather isn’t always comparable, I don’t worry about the poisonous critters or mountain lions and such. You’re lucky you didn’t step on a Fire Ant hole or come face to face with a Texas sized cockroach! Come back to Ohio!

  7. Lucy Howe on June 20, 2014 at 6:06 am

    I love you Stacy for not thinking you have to be brave !!! Get out of there !!!!! Stacy safe !!!!

  8. Rebecca J on June 20, 2014 at 2:41 am

    A word of caution about black widows, mine LOVE to nest under the lip of our large rubbermaid water tanks. Since I like to scrub and dump them every few days, we installed an eye bolt that is easy to grab without slipping your fingers under the edge to tip it. I kill about 5-10 every summer. At least they’re consistent – they like dark corners with limited traffic. In 26 years in Texas (also moved from the north woods), I’ve only seen a brown recluse maybe a dozen times. Plenty of snakes but, *knocking on wood* never had one bother a horse. I did have one of my 2 year olds come in with porcupine quills in his nose one night though!
    Prayers for safe travels back north!

  9. Liz on June 20, 2014 at 2:09 am

    So pleased i live in europe, I wish Hope well. God bless.

  10. Michelle Jayne on June 20, 2014 at 1:41 am

    Oh Stacy, I think I have you beat on jumpy my mom had a ranch in Livermore CA and we had A ton of rattle snacks well I had a baby girl when I was 21 and when she was around 4 I was cleaning out her toy box in her playroom and I found a baby rattler alive scary and I about came out of my skin, then we had see through scorpion and she had one in her bassenet so when I went to lay her down for a nap the dog went nuts I could figure out why he wouldn’t let me so I pushed him out of the way and looked in and there it was hard to see but it was there. So I feel ya when it comes to those critters and we had cattle and horses get bitten by rattlers it scary but HOPE will be good soon but jumpy for awhile Travel safely and good luck with the critters.

  11. Carolyn E Williams on June 19, 2014 at 11:44 pm

    wait til the coyotes come up on your driveway, 35 feet from your front door, and run off with/and eat, your small dog! Not a pretty sight,; usually have my gun on, but that morning I didn’t.; sad, she was a good dog. Texas is just Texas, you have to adjust.; and be ready for ANYTHING that is “dished” out. See you when the weather gets a lot “cooler”,’ be safe. Good luck… Montgomery, Texas <3

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:38 am

      We have been hearing them the last few nights but haven’t seen them:)

  12. Sandy Jackson on June 19, 2014 at 11:28 pm

    I live in Texas and love it, but I almost lost my mare to a rattlesnake bite on the lip. Had another bit that had swollen similar to Hope. I’ve had a dog bit on the leg. Thankfully haven’t seen any rattlers yet this year, but have had a couple of bullsnakes, won’t kill them even though they do scare me. Wish I could attach pics of my mare that I almost lost, even the vet wasn’t sure she would pull through, but thank the LORD, she did.

  13. Bonnie M. Butler on June 19, 2014 at 11:04 pm

    Sorry, I would have smashed every one of them. I go out of my way to kill a spider and any snake when they are on my place. I don’t care how beneficial they are.

  14. terryhronekTerry Hronek on June 19, 2014 at 11:04 pm

    Funny, I was going to move to Tampa, Florida near a lake and the realtor told me that I couldn’t walk or ride in the woods since rattlesnakes rest and hang from the trees and there are gators sunning themselves in the weeds near the water. Decided to stay in Ohio. Welcome home. But after this last winter, I would have headed for Texas like you.

  15. Kathe Anetzberger on June 19, 2014 at 10:59 pm

    You missed the part in the video where you whacked them !! I hope your horse recovers soon. Scary situation !!

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:40 am

      Had to put the camera down. The rattlesnake got away…

  16. joanne Mackenzie on June 19, 2014 at 10:40 pm

    I would be gone too. Hope your horse is ok. Check your horse trailer, before you load up.!Scary.
    Worst thing here in Beautiful B.C Can. is snow in 3mos in winter, lol.

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:41 am

      Yeah…kinda funny that I think I might choose to escape mud and snow and pick the critters…lol

  17. Paola Versteeg on June 19, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    Pfffff glad to be in the Netherlands. Nothing poisonous, exept human, lives here. Move Stacy! 😉

  18. Christine on June 19, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    I am totally weirded out.Think I will stay in NH–snow and all!

  19. Lisa Waggoner on June 19, 2014 at 10:13 pm

    You’re leaving before you meet a scorpion?

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:40 am

      They have 24 hours to make an appearance…unless they jump in the suitcase and take a ride in the clothes!

  20. Renee on June 19, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    We have all that here in Nevada too. We have been here from Ohio for 20 years and are moving back. And not because of the critters, but because we have standardbred racehorses and it is too expensive to be here (hay is $18 a bale, $1,000 to ship one horse one-way) and not on the east coast racing them.

    Most of the time our encounters are germane, but figure God has blessed us with no tragedies, but we have had some vet bills. We have had numerous snake and scorpion bites on our horses because they can’t seem to keep their noses out of where they don’t belong. Particularly the young ones. My older horses seem to instinctively know better. But thank God, good, prompt medical care and no one is worse for the wear except for our wallets.

  21. jill on June 19, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    No scorpions?

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:42 am

      Still waiting…

  22. Leta Wilson on June 19, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    Yep – we are heading for Colorado for over two months! Can’t wait and no snakes at 9,000 ft. and lots of cool air and beautiful places to ride! Hope you are back and can attend Cowgirl Induction ! See you then if so 🙂

  23. Maria on June 19, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    Same with Johanna, I live in California. Black Widows are common, and essentially harmless. They enjoy living in garages and dark corners, so they really don’t bother us that much, as long as you keep places they like to hide neat! I can count on one hand the amount of times I’ve actually seen one in the house.

    Brown recluses are a different story… my brother was bitten by one in the face when we first moved into our brand new home in Southern California. The doctors adamantly told us that while it was strikingly similar to a brown recluse bite, those didn’t exist where we live. Obviously, they did, which researchers found later.

    Snakes and tarantulas are less frequent, as we live in a highly populated area. THOSE creep me out and scare me, probably just because I’m not used to them.

    Funny how the deadly one doesn’t scare me, but the less harmful ones do…

  24. Linda Anderson Lee on June 19, 2014 at 9:59 pm

    The black widow spider appears to be a male. According to my spider book SPIDERS AND THEIR KIN , the male black widow doesn’t bite. The brown recluse does and leaves a nasty wound. Hope you have enjoyed your stay in Texas in spite of the critters.

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:42 am

      Interesting! I think I might need to read up on them.

  25. Crystal on June 19, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    I live in Australia and am used to being surrounded by deadly animals! Lol
    Im super jealous you get tarantulas!!! Theyre so cool! I plan to get one as a pet one day!!
    My old horse shed used to be infested with red backs… similar to black widow spiders. They never bothered me.

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:45 am

      Once I get over the surprise I am interested in them too. Yesterday we thought a tarantula was dragging a huge bug across the road and stopped to see…Turns out a HUGE bug was dragging the tarantula! Lol…still don’t know what that bug was.
      The only thing that bothers me is the surprise. Plus I am having trouble remembering not to reach without looking first. Bad habit down here.

  26. johanna on June 19, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    we have all those in here California too, but the great things about the state and the West in general, keep me here despite my being from the Northeast as well..

    you may change your mind, one does get used to living with and knowing these different creatures and how to move around them; but it IS very different at first 🙂
    i’ve actually gotten to the point where I realize their utility and appreciate their existence, believe it or not!

  27. Glen Saunders on June 19, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    Stacy when you return to Texas come prepared…….http://www.tractorsupply.com/en/store/ichthammol-20%25-drawing-salve-14-oz

  28. Deborah on June 19, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    You forgot the scorpions. and that checking your boots EVERY time you put them one is a must do to avoid nasty surprises..

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:47 am

      Maybe the snakes and spiders are eating them here, lol. Have been checking the boots.

  29. melody on June 19, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    Oh hell no……I could not handle any of those. I live in Iowa and there are things here but thank the lord I have never run into any yet……………………………..I pray for Hope…….keep us updated safe travels. I would of been packed and gone like the wind…..

  30. Denise Toppi on June 19, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    come back to Maine where you belong!!

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:45 am

      My mom is pushing this idea too!

  31. Nancy Graham on June 19, 2014 at 9:35 pm

    You have heard the phrase ‘Don’t mess with Texas’…..now you know why!

    • Stacy on June 20, 2014 at 10:46 am

      Ah! Yes! Now I know. That fits rather nicely:) Beautiful state and I LOVE the weather.

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