How do you kill a rattler without mutilating it?

Submitted by Russell on 2/22/02. ( )

I have never been found anyone who knows how to kill 'em without chopping their heads off. Thats the way we've always done it but I want to do a snake mount and would like to know how to killthem. Thanks for any help you can give.


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This response submitted by TJ on 2/22/02. ( )

I always freeze them for about 7days to dispatch them and it works well for me.

try drowning

This response submitted by jerry on 2/22/02. ( )

Drowning has been an effective way for me in the past.

Carbon Monoxide!

This response submitted by on 2/22/02. ( )

Why not put the snake in a sealed container with a lid, crank up the old Chevy, and run a hose from the exhaust pipe into the container for about 20 minutes. That ought to do the trick works good on Armadillos too for that perfect speciman.

Freeze or heat

This response submitted by Snake guy on 2/22/02. ( )

Freeze for seven days and thaw in covered container to make sure it is dead before handling. Snakes die when body temperature passes 104 degrees F. Kill snake by immersing in hot water, but not boiling water. Tap water that is 140-160 degrees will kill the snake quickly and will not damage the skin.

snake dispatching

This response submitted by on 2/23/02. ( )

Put him in the freezer. He will go into hybernation and never wake up. As for the length of time, 24 hours is plenty, as long as he is hard. You did not mention however wether you already have one in a confined area, or wether you are considering catching one. I could tell you the best way of catching them but i am assuming you are inexperienced at venemous snake handling so oi will not do that. If you see them in the wild, keep a small CO2 fire extinguisher with you in the car. When you see one, spray him with it. The cold CO2 will render him helpless and listless enough for you to pick him up by the tail and put in a cloth bag and tie the end in a knot.As for the hot water somebody mentioned, Do NOT do it. It will definetally ruin the skin! I have mounted hundreds of rattlers and within ten minutes in hot water, you will cook the skin even in temps as low as 120 degrees


This response submitted by Jerry Hart on 2/23/02. ( )

Believe it or not, you can fill his mouth with SKOLL Chewing Tobacco,( not sure about that spelling) and he will be dead within a few minutes. However, I suggest the Freezing since you don't need to put Anything in his mouth in order to kill him.


This response submitted by Eddie Boutwell on 2/26/02. ( )

Jerry Harts' info. about the chewing tobacco reminded me of something else I heard. You can sprinkle LEVI GARRETT snuff on a fire ant mound and it will get rid of them.
(The workers will take it to the queen and when she comes up to spit all you have to do is kill her and this causes such a disruption that they move somewhere else!)

On Rattlesnakes

This response submitted by pythonkeeper on 3/1/02. ( )

Here's an idea-Give the snake to me-ALIVE-and go to a ceramics store and buy a sculpture. I have also seen realistic woodcarvings. If you MUST have a skin mount, call some breeders and ask if they will trade you the carcass of one that died of natural causes for your live one(worth a try)

How best to kill a snake!

This response submitted by Barry J. Cressman on 3/1/02. ( Barry J, Cressman )

As a amatuer herpetologist, you people make me ill, stick to the animals that are already dead, not killed just for your morbid disire to see a animal you have not the courage or fortitude to maintain alive. I keep several species of snakes in my collection, color is NEVER the same in a dead snake as it is in a preserved specimen nor is the attitude and grace that these animals can display ever reflected in a dead specimen. You might have noted I used my real name, as I always do if you have the testicular foritude, feel free to e-mail me I can calmly discuss the subject with anyone that is capable of the same calm demeanor--to those of you that feel the need to capture live specimens and execute them, your time is comming--wonder what method of preservation you would recommend for yourselves. Stick to road kills--a perefectly acceptable gathering technique that laeves wild populations--a diminishing wild population, alone.

Barry Cressman

How to best kill a snake

This response submitted by Brad Uhrig on 3/1/02. ( )

I myself am an avid herper and I love all animals as well. Killing them is not something I practice myself but to each his own is my opinion. Mounting animals is a great display showing off the animals colors, look, the whole nine yards. Killing the animals should at least be humane I would think. Chopping off heads while still alive is not a good way, the freezer method and or CO2 is acceptable. The real thing that bothers me is the rattlesnake roundups senseless killing in my opinion, they gather to many animal to be butchered, let alone drag, gas, or however else they do it to get the animals out of their den where they are not bothering anyone. I myself have some animal taxidermy including alligator, and rattlesnakes. Now I can guess these animal were killed inhumanely but that is something I just dont know. I have looked at my pieces and studied them, and I have actually learned a lot by looking and studying the pieces.That is my 2 cents ppl have to make their money as long as it is not endangering the species I guess is the most important and as long as it is for good use..IE Display, scientific research maybe then so be it. It is not like we can stop this practice we just have to live with it.....


Go kill yourselves

This response submitted by Sam on 3/1/02. ( )

There is absolutely no need to kill these beautiful snakes or any other species. You'd better off killing yourselves.

Talk to a Herper

This response submitted by LL on 3/1/02. ( )

if you realy feel you MUST have a mounted rattlesnake, why not talk to a herpetologist who works with the species, as hard as we try to keep them alive, some just don't make it.
Besides being the right thing to do, chances are you'll get a better specimen, no scars, bigger, etc. If you make arrangements ahead of time and can get ahold of one who dies from old age, not slaughter, he'll be a big one, since reptiles grow pretty much their entire lives. Currently I have someone I supply dead snakes to for educational skeletal mounts.
Remember guys, it may be just a snake, and a dangerous one at that, to you but it's still an animal, same as your dog.

IF you want to see the beauty of an animal....

This response submitted by jared w on 3/1/02. ( )

why dont you just let it live and that way one can observe the animals true beauty. killing animals just to "doll them up" afterwards doesnt show any beauty to me. leave them alone, also you guys might wanna consider many rattlers are protected by federal and local state laws, and heavy fines can be placed on endangered animals. my .2

jared w


This response submitted by Michael Barrera on 3/1/02. ( )

Go and find a breeder or delaer...they die of natural causes and usually frozen and sent to taxidermists anyway. Dont kill an innocent life....get a dead one...the Do die even with us herpetologists trying ourbest to keep them alive and reporduce them. Do not go out and kill them for funand mojnt them for fun...seems to me like you have no clue to what you are doing...

Come on guys...

This response submitted by Troll on 3/1/02. ( )

There are so many wrongs about the idea of mounting snakes I don't know where to begin. Not least of which is wasting good snuff trying to kill the poor thing. Now guys, I'm a hunter and yes I have mounts. Taxidermy is a beautiful art form but not when it is done in such ugly ways. Taxidermy is meant to immortalize the animal with honor and with the dignity intact. Drowning, freezing, or any other method of killing any snake (healthy that is, unhealthy specimens that are beyond rehab should be put down by other means) is very irresponsible. The folks above really have the best ideas of obtaining good specimens. Hope you follow their advice.

Killing Rattlesnakes Humanely

This response submitted by Chris Harper on 3/1/02. ( )

If taxidermists are going to be killing snakes for mounts, I suppose the most humane way to kill them is to freeze them. It is a natural process that they endure to some degree in the wild anyway.

Near where I live, a 14 year old boy dug a frozen copperhead out of a riverbank one winter. He took it home completely frozen and brought it inside. When it thawed out, it bit him on the finger and he came to the emergency room. They didn't kill it, and his mom ended up letting him keep it as a pet. Anyway, that just backs up what I'm saying about freezing.

I would follow up on the individual's suggestion that the snake be frozen for several days as well. If it had only been frozen for a day, it could still be alive.

But all of this stuff about drowning, gassing, hot water -- Good grief. At least give rattlesnakes the respect due to another living creature, and take their life in a humane way.

I personally have hunted deer, doves, turkeys, quail etc. But I always felt it was my responsibility to provide the animal with a quick, painless death. If I didn't think I could make a heart/lung shot on a deer, I didn't take it. It's called Sportsmanship.

Why don't you guys (taxidermists) check out <a href=""><b></b></a>, the online portal for venomous snake keepers? It's the largest venomous reptile only website in the world. There are over a thousand photos currently.

Chris Harper
Paramedic, Snakebite Instructor

PS - You guys seem to be surprised that we discovered you on the net.


This response submitted by Naja on 3/3/02. ( )

I cannot believe the mentality of you damn Redneck Assholes. I would love to meet you and You tell me of you gassing a snake or Putting Snuff in its mouth to kill it. I would rip your face off and Mount it on my Wall.


This response submitted by joe baxter on 3/3/02. ( )

It is clear to me now how prevalent inbreeding is with huckle berries like you rednecks. I thought taxidermy was for promoting sportsmanship not animal cruelty. I only hope that skoll man recieves a fatal bite for torturing animals.Keep eating those retard sandwiches

On Killing

This response submitted by Chad Minter (SwampY) on 3/4/02. ( )

All beings tremble before punishment. Life is dear to all. When a man realizes this he does not kill, nor cause to be killed. ~The Buddha


This response submitted by ERIC DOLAN on 3/5/02. ( )

The fact that he who puts tobacco in a snakes mouth to kill it has a mother and father who are brother and sister. So tell me what do you call your parents mom and dad or auntie and uncle? Reply: duh golie gee (scratching balls and picking teeth) I nerer thouht abod it. Alls i er say to um is ow when day hit me in da bak of da head all da time

the perfect way...

This response submitted by taylor on 4/22/02. ( )

i know the perfect way to kil a rattle snake... you simply lock all the doors to your house and then take some handcuffs and handcuff yourself to the refrigerater (make sure all the phone lines are cut) and then let the snake lay in your lap when he sees that you are not going to hurt you he will simply die on his on... oh and make sure you tell him what possition you want him to stay is...dumbass

kill a snake

This response submitted by william horton on 6/10/02. ( )

to kill a rattle snake well i know you dont want it mangled but my self i would just blow its head off with a 10 gauge

Kill The Demonic Beast

This response submitted by Josh on 07/31/2002. ( )

There are plenty of ways to get rid of this satanic devil.
1. Get the closest chainsaw and saw its head off.
2. Get a 9mm with and blow its head off.
3. Firebomb the demon, for all I care.
4. Drive over the jackass with your vehicle.
5. This hateful,hoggish,demonic,satanic has no place on this earth.

i understand

This response submitted by mike on 08/12/2002. ( )

all you herpatolagist and animal hippies must not have a sense of humor or something. i am respectul of herpatolagist, and do plan to study reptiles my self, but i do have a sense of humor and i dont think you all should have responded the way you all did, exspecially the animal hippies. i hate people that have no sense of humor. any ways. i do know that snakes can survive for a long time while frozen but still its probably the best way to kill the snake. have fun.

Sense of Humor?

This response submitted by Chris Harper on 08/26/2002. ( )

What does a sense of humor have to do with any of these responses? While some of the responses posted by the taxidermists included a "tongue in cheek" attitude, I seriously doubt that they were kidding about their methods of killing rattlesnakes - boiling, drowning and "death by snuff".

In my post above, I stated that "IF" they were going to kill them (and there is nothing I can do to stop it), I condoned freezing as the method of choice. My only point in my post is that any animal deserves a quick and painless death, regardless of whether you are afraid of them or not.

Josh, who posted above you, is obviously terrified of snakes. Isn't it interesting that he tries to present himself as a "tough guy" by choosing things like chainsaws, 9mm's and firebombs, to kill rattlesnakes with. But in reality he's just a coward isn't he. I've seen this time and time again. People (mostly men) will tell me, "Shoot, if I see a rattlesnake, I'll blow his d@mn head off with my 30-06." But what they are really saying is, "I'm scared", and I have no problem pointing that out to them.

Chris Harper
Nationally Registered Paramedic
Snakebite Instructor

Feed It a Poisoned Mouse

This response submitted by Sage on 08/27/2002. ( )

Has anyone suggested taking a mouse, feeding it some sort of relatively fast but not immediate poison, and allowing the rattler to chomp it? Josh above had the right idea, naja is being a bit goofy.
The last rattler I killed struck at me -- his final mistake. He would be no good to you, however, since my frinds and I stoned him to death. He crawled into some rocks where he most likely died a slow and painful death, but if he didn't die, he is maimed for life. Serves him right--it's as much my desert as it his, and he had no qualms about possibly whacking me, why should I regret snuffing this devil?

Feed It a Poisoned Mouse

This response submitted by Sage on 08/27/2002. ( )

Has anyone suggested taking a mouse, feeding it some sort of relatively fast but not immediate poison, and allowing the rattler to chomp it? Josh above had the right idea, naja is being a bit goofy.
The last rattler I killed struck at me -- his final mistake. He would be no good to you, however, since my frinds and I stoned him to death. He crawled into some rocks where he most likely died a slow and painful death, but if he didn't die, he is maimed for life. Serves him right--it's as much my desert as it his, and he had no qualms about possibly whacking me, why should I regret snuffing this devil?

kill or be killed?

This response submitted by deadmanwlkn on 09/06/2002. ( )

all I have is a question for the one who says that the desert is as much his as it is the rattle snake. How long have you or your family lived in the desert? I can asure you that the rattle snake breed hase been there long before you and it most likley thought that you was going to kill it and there tried to scare you off or kill you first out of selfdefence. Think about the fact that you are a giant from his stand point and I bet that he was rather scared of that giant before the rocks started to fly, you can also think of the fact that he can only defend himself one way and you have a number of ways to give the snakes their respect and letting them live


This response submitted by dave on 09/22/2002. ( )

Why are all you tree huggers on this web site? I am against needless killing just for a mount, but maybe you might suggest ways for this person to get a sample without needless killing and not go off on him like some PETA board of directors member. I understand that some of you love snakes more than life, but in the end, we all die including your snakes. give this person the name of one of the snake breeders and quite possably he might trade this snake for the next snake that the breeder has die from natural causes. Then everyone wins, with out you morons attacking him. I recently captured a cotton mouth at a neighborhood pond (where kids play and feed ducks), I tried to do the right thing and called animal control thinking they could re-release the snake somewhere safe, and the officer came and cut his head off. Seems like the advocates for snakes didnt extend to the animal control officer. Anyway, Im just saying that if you dont like to see animals die, you might try searching the green peace web site, or maybe PETA's site, This is a taxidermy site where I hate to tell you, people actually mount dead animals.


This response submitted by Farhan syed on 10/15/2002. ( )

This respond submitted by farhan. READ THIS
how to privent a snake bit.a way to prevent a snake bit is by RUNNING

by farhan syed


This response submitted by Farhan syed on 10/15/2002. ( )

This respond submitted by farhan. READ THIS
how to privent a snake bit.a way to prevent a snake bit is by RUNNING

by farhan syed


This response submitted by FARHAN SYED on 10/15/2002. ( )

some body asked me should you eat snake or to be legle to eat snakes in resturant or homes or hotles? my resond was HELL YE why I have no idea.

Treating Shedded Snake Skin

This response submitted by Kevin on 12/24/2002. ( )

Hello All,
I've got what is probably a dumb question but I have a big black snake that lives on my property (usually in the barn) and he/she recently shed a near perfect skin. It's well over six foot long and I wanted to 'preserve' it in such a way that I could show it the nieces/nephews etc when they come for a visit.
So is there anything I can do with a shed skin to keep it from drying up and getting brittle? This snake has shed before (obviously) but this last one is so perfect I hate to see it just go to waste.
I don't know if this is the right place to ask such a question but I had to start somewhere. Thanks in advance and God grant you all a Happy Holiday.

kill a rattlesnake

This response submitted by filip on 12/26/2002. ( )

Just give the snake a lethal injection of heroïn. Man i wish i was that snake

Thank god i live in california

This response submitted by Sal on 02/13/2003. ( )

Dear Hicks
People from the south (like you backwoods country folk here trying to kill rattlesnakes with skoal) should be quarantined and not let into the rest of the country. You speak a different weird language, and you listen to horrible country music. You keep yelling about how the south is gonna rise again, but you keep quiet when someone mentions General Sherman. I hope one day California decides they've had enough, and destroys you and your way of life.

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