This situation had a happy ending, but it could very easily have been a tragedy and I avoided talking about it until I knew which way we were heading.
This little gopher snake was caught on a glue trap at my work a few weeks ago. They managed to get themselves caught by the head and tail with their mid-body wrapped around the leg of a storage rack that was too heavy to lift, so the only way to free them was to carefully, carefully peel their tail away from the sticky paper while trying to keep them from panicking and entangling themselves further. Then once we could move the sticky trap we were able to use dish soap to free the snake from the glue. During this process they struggled against the glue and managed to do some serious and scary damage to the skin on their neck and were not looking like they’d be able to survive. My boss suggested swift euthanasia, but I decided to take them home and treat them to see if they might heal.
Happily, they were very determined to live. They tolerated washing, topical medication, endured the sparse conditions of a hospice enclosure, and enthusiastically took provided meals for the past few weeks with only minor efforts to bite me to death before rewarding my care with a perfect shed and some fresh, healthy skin where their injury was. I was able to return them to the wild today, on the same property where they were caught and far enough away from the building that they’ll hopefully not try to come back inside. They’ll probably always have a small scar as a reminder of the time they got too close to humans.
I hate glue traps.
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