Education, Fascination, Ovulation, Copulation


Don’t think for one second that I would attend a class called Sex, Lies, and Rattlesnakes and not report back.

The seminar was led by a spunky lady who let us know early on that her aim was to “educate and fascinate” (which, incidentally, is going to be the title of my next song).  As an opener, she had people call out some common reasons why humans might be afraid of snakes.

Shifty eyes!  Flicking tongue!  Slithery!  Venomous!

Of course, the whole time, I wanted to scream what I found to be the most obvious answer: LUCIFER.  But I held my (non-forked) tongue.

The first thing I learned is that the dens that rattlesnakes hibernate in are called “winter hibernacula.”  By default, this means that there will need to be a line in my rattlesnake song about Dracula.

Beyond that, the majority of the hour was spent learning about the sex lives of rattlesnakes.  How they do it.  While I heard words like “ovum,” “ripe,” and “gravid” tossed around, pictures of snakes doing the nasty were flashed up on the screen.  Apparently, July and August are mating season in Colorado, so on my upcoming outdoor excursions, I plan to be on the lookout – now that I know what to shield my eyes from.

Male rattlesnakes are drawn to the females by scent.  Research shows that males that follow a straight line trajectory, rather than slithering all over kingdom come looking for something better, are more likely to find themselves a pretty, nice-smelling, kickass she-snake.  I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure this translates to human English.

The mating lasts anywhere from 1.5 to 12 hours.  Eventually the female becomes restless and drags the male around until separation occurs.  That is straight from the PowerPoint, my friends – and the reason my song will end with the line, “Ovulate, copulate, now separate – I’M SERIOUS.”



  1. The Bug on July 28, 2010 at 8:08 AM

    Well I for one can’t wait to hear that little ditty :)

  2. Jacklyn on July 28, 2010 at 9:03 AM

    OH MY. haha. Now I am even more afraid of snakes ;)

  3. Chelsea on July 28, 2010 at 9:18 AM

    You make me laugh so hard. I’M SERIOUS.

  4. Angela on July 28, 2010 at 9:21 AM

    i still don’t get it. what do they do? where is the….(I know)…hole? i want to know what it LOOKS LIKE when they copulate. there’s no appendages which makes the visual both confusing and compelling.

  5. hootenannie on July 28, 2010 at 9:25 AM

    Angela, I’ll tell you when you’re older.

  6. kimberly on July 28, 2010 at 10:20 AM

    dracula? this whole business makes me think of bunnicula. anyone?

  7. Greta Weisman on July 28, 2010 at 11:08 AM




    I love that you’re taking this class.

  8. Whitney on July 28, 2010 at 11:21 AM

    This is the best blog post I have read in a long time.

  9. Laurissa on July 28, 2010 at 11:36 AM

    I was highly amused by this. Thanks Annie! I’m also dying of curiousity now too…thanks- lol.

  10. wrecklessgirl on July 28, 2010 at 11:52 AM

    so happy you posted this. made my day. rawr … or rather, Sssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss.

  11. Anastasia on July 28, 2010 at 1:29 PM

    WHAT?! 1.5 to 12 HOURS?! Seriously? Awesome. Wait. Why is it that people say “they were doing it like bunnies”? Shouldn’t it now be “they were doing it like snakes”? I’m going to start saying that.

  12. Brent on July 29, 2010 at 4:59 AM

    @kimberly: Bunnicula!!!!

    Also, hahahahahahahaha….

  13. […] can you expect to hear about from November?  Another REI class (not about rattlesnake sex), my nephew Micah’s 7th birthday, lots of running (I’m back up to 7.2 miles), a […]

Leave a Comment