Thursday, April 01, 2010

Finding a 2m Long Boiga

My luck for spotting snakes is returning. This morning a group of mynahs hovering over a drain along Island Country Club Road seemed unusual. A peek into the drain revealed a long thin snake of over 2 meters.
It was moving rather sluggishly. I dumped my backpack,  pulled out my camera, and started to photograph the snake Rat Snake was my initial thought but it didn’t seem right. My next guess was a Cat Snake as it was thin, long bodied snakes with large heads and large eyes.
Upon closer look at the snake, I found that it had two large ticks at the base of it skull.
With rains and then the subsequent hot weather, conditions were also ideal for tick infestation. This wasn’t good as ticks can be harmful to reptiles. Previously, a rescued Spiny Hill Tortoise plucked from a drain also had ticks.
After taking my photos I hoofed it to the NParks ranger station to confirm the identity of the cat snake.
Boiga is a group of mildly venomous, rear-fanged, snakes typically known as cat snakes. They are primarily found throughout Southeast Asia, India and Australia, and there are 33 recognized species in the genus. The snake that was in the drain was a Dog-toothed Cat Snake
I then went back with my friends from NParks as only they could retrieve the snake and relocate it away from the busy road. Unfortunately, the snake expired while being transported to safety. We do not know what caused its death. There were no external injuries on its body, other then it was sluggish and weak it okay. The snake was 2.25 m long from nose to tail.


Ivan said...

Cool sighting! But damn, poor snake. =( If preserved, I guess it would make an interesting specimen for research, or for education and outreach.

Shirls said...

Yup. I hope it gets preserved by NParks or RMBR. It will be a perfect specimen.

lew said...

Very cool that your snake spotting skills are returned! That would be a very tough snake to spot as it's quite well camouflaged

Shirls said...

Hi Lew, it has been a while since you last dropped me a note. :) Yes, hopefully I will get to see more snakes this year.