My plantings above this rock wall have gotten weedier and weedier ever since I discovered a copperhead amidst them. It had been weeks since we last saw it and I'd begun to hope that it had died of gunshot wounds after disappearing into a crevice.
Encouraged by this hope and invigorated by the cooler weather, I took my hoe and went to attack the weeds. My procedure was to poke around with the hoe in the area I planned to weed, keeping an eye out for any slithery movement and then, after seeing none, to plunge in and pull weeds.
After about a half an hour of cautious weeding, I was nearing the area where the copperhead was last seen. Poke, poke--SONOFAGUN!!!-- there it was, heading for the same place it disappeared last time.
Reader, I took my hoe and hacked the poor critter to death, kinda like that woman in the BC comics. I really felt bad about it--but that's just too close to the house for comfort.
Of course, there may be more. Cautious weeding will continue.