Originally Posted by Streamhound
I imagine having a high power rifle soothes most wildlife tensions
For sure, but even without the rifle after being around all our critters for most of my life there is nothing to worry about. I'd worry more about getting sprayed by a skunk than any of the predators. And take every single predator over a run in with yellow jackets or bald faced hornets.
On snakes, when I lived in Alabama we would wade rivers for bass and the cottonmouths were numerous. It wasn't uncommon to see a dozen or more in a day. It gets unnerving late in the day when visibility goes down, but luckily none of us ever got bit. I respect the venomous snakes in the south, but am not afraid of them. I give them their space and watch where I put vulnerable body parts while out and about