Totally understand removing or killing them if you have dogs or children. That said, most of the fear of them is totally overblown. The one you kill that you see doesn't do anything for the half dozen you step right next to or over that you or your dogs or kids don't see,
Seriously, they are extremely passive creatures, but I do understand the hysteria and fear. Just don' t respect it much.
Couple years ago a neighbor built a house up the road only a short walk from me and he called me one day scared out of his wits. "There's a snake under my lawn mower!"
"What kind of snake" I ask.
"A black snake."
I'm chuckling to myself because I think this big guys is scared of a black racer, how funny is that?
Anyway, I mosey on down there and as I come around the corner of his house I can hear the rattle raging as his two dogs are barking under the mower. Black snake, eh? I took a peak under the lawn mower and there was a huge .... a HUGE rattle snake under there.
It had to be removed, especially since the guy's wife would never come out of the house again (which, on hind sight and further acquaintance of her I realize now would have actually been a good thing.)
So he gives me the key to the riding lawn mover and I .... I climbed on top of that lawn mower with that snake rattling like hell under neath me. That was unnerving, I can assure you. It took me several minutes to figure out how to actually start the lawn mower up. The neighbor would shout directions to me from across the yard - he wasn't getting anywhere near those things.
I admit to being fairly rattled myself (pun intended) because the rattle of the snake was amplified by the blade cage and I was sitting directly over the top of the thing. In memory all I could here was that rattle and his directions were faint and confusing. But I finally turned the motor on and put the thing in gear.
Probably you are wondering why I didn't just turn the blade on and kill the thing then and there. Well, I should probably explain that the neighbor was nervously handling a shotgun and I could just picture that snake coming out in pieces and him shooting indiscriminately and me getting in the way. So instead, I just put the mower in gear and backed off the things, becoming more scared of my neighbor's gun than the snake as I did so.
And to my surprise there was not just one rattle snake but two - no wonder the thing looked so damn big and rattled so loud!
Anyway, the things just took off, slithering for cover, never molesting anyone. They didn't have a chance though. It only took two shots and they were done for. They did get eaten though. So I never felt too bad about it.