Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Resident Common Bronzeback's Feast

Still busy photographing the pair of Kings. They aren't finished with their parenting duties yet. When the helper shouts from the backyard below, "MDM, COME SNAKE!!!"
What snake could it be? As I raced to grab the macro lens just in case I needed it. Upon arriving at the backyard, I initially couldn't see the snake. The helper said black snake but I didn't see a black snake. It was only till she point it out that I saw it and realized that the snake was the resident Common Bronzeback that we spotted last year. It indeed preyed on the Four-lined Tree Frogs as it had one in its mouth. The frog was frantic and yelping away trying to get out of the snake strong grip.As this was a natural occurrence in the wild, I did not intervene in the struggle between predator and prey. Instead, I silently observed the scene and documented it.
One thing that became apparent during the 30-minute struggle, the Common Bronzeback was obviously non-venomous. It had a strong grip on the frog and seemed to be strangling it with it mouth.
The snake dragged the frog behind my potted plants and fell with it prey through the mesh netting. Froggie thought is would try to cling onto the clothe peg and release itself from the vice like grip.Snake and frog eventually fell on to the clothe stand in my neighbor's backyard.They stayed there for another about 15 mins before the snake disappeared with the frog. It could have slithered into the drain to quietly finish off its prey.


Shawn said...

Great shots Shirls! A wonderful moment captured. However I wonder how these snakes kill the frogs. They don't have venom, so should it be by something like suffocation?

Shirls said...

Hi Shawn,

My guess is it uses its fangs to grip the frog. It may be death by suffocation as it was biting down hard on the frog and puntuating vital organs. It was unfortunate that the snake decided it didn't want a spectator around any longer.