‘Hope you didn’t have a pet rattlesnake’

  • A FedEx deliveryman used garage tools to kill a rattlesnake he found outside someone’s door.

  • The homeowner said the driver should be nominated for “Employee of the Year.”

  • “Sorry about the blood,” the driver said in a text to the homeowner.

Neither snow nor rain nor snakes, apparently. A FedEx driver in Nebraska who came face to face with a rattlesnake outside a homeowner’s door while delivering a package went above and beyond the call of duty earlier this month.

Instead of dropping the package and running, he went to the homeowner’s garage, collected some choice tools, and killed the venomous snake.

Ring doorbell camera footage provided to NTV, an ABC affiliate in Nebraska, shows the snake slithering toward the door and rattling its tale before the delivery man, Matt Hovier, arrived on August 11.

According to NTV, the snake was a 36-inch prairie rattlesnake. Prairie rattlesnakes are the largest rattlesnakes found in the United States and can grow up to five feet long, according to the National Park Service.

Once Hovier saw the snake, he grabbed tools from the home’s garage and used them to kill it, NTV reported. Hovier then removed the snake’s body and texted the homeowner, Christie Jones, and wrote: “I hope you didn’t have a pet rattlesnake at your front door, because I killed him.”

“Sorry about the blood,” Hovier added.

In a Facebook post, Jones said FedEx should nominate Hovier for Employee of the Year for killing the “anaconda-sized rattler” on her front step. Jones said in the post that her child had walked out the same door the snake was near 20 minutes before Hovier arrived.

“Anyone who really knows me knows how incredibly fearful I am of any kind of snake,” Jones wrote.

Prairie rattlesnakes are ambush predators that typically hide under brush, waiting until their prey is within striking distance to attack. The snakes can control how much of their venom they release with each bite, and typically release 20% to 50% of their venom when biting prey, the National Park Service says.

While Hovier successfully subdued the rattlesnake, the National Park Service recommends leaving rattlesnakes alone to avoid being bitten.

“One of the best ways to prevent a bite is to give these animals plenty of space and not try to handle them,” the National Park Service says. “Bites are more likely to happen if you provoke or attempt to catch a rattlesnake.”

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