Monday, December 21, 2009

So I shot something today...

 

with an air-fun. In fact, my wife gave it a severely disabilitating shot in the lower back. Then I gave it another 4 shots. When it finally fell out of the tree, Lucky (who spot it the whole time and kept us supplied with ammo, and who has the best eyes by far), whacked it with a pool cleaning pole. The hunt took 2.5 hours. It was hot. It was humid. It was strenuous. The adversary was dangerous. In fact, the most feared of its size in Africa.

Today, I shot something. I shot a black mamba who was playing in the trees above my kids' swing at my in-laws' house. It was hard work. It needed focus. It needed teamwork. It seriously needed more caliber than the air-gun we had. We seriously needed to improve our aim. But after almost 3 hours, we conquered the serpent.

 

Generally the Black Mamba is shy and won't attack humans. However, as it will remain in a tree for days if there are enough birds to hunt, it poses a serious threat if that tree overhangs a balcony and you pass under it every time you leave the house. Black mambas become very aggressive when cornered or threatened, and as the most poisonous serpent in Africa, it's better not to risk the lives of the inhabitants of the yard. Generally these animals perform a great task in keeping rodents and pests under control. But they are dangerous, and especially to my kids. And then, I'm sorry, it's going down.

 

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Lucky has amazing snake spotting skills, because to follow the movement of a brown snake at about 6m in a tree, perfectly camouflaged like a branch itself, is not easy. My eyes started watering seriously after a while and my neck nearly broke off backwards with all the craning my head up, but eventually, after 5 direct hits (one courtesy of Nellie, my wife, who used to be a competitive markswoman in school)  it decided to come down to the ground where Lucky finished it off with a pole. I stayed clear. Even in the pic above I was still nervous.

More of Libya, our amazing 3 day road-trip through the Karoo, Eastern Free State and Mpumalanga and all the other adventures at Danie Nel Photography cc... next time.

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