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 Post subject: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2011 4:23 pm 
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During our recent trip to the KNP we were travelling on the gravel road from the Shingwedzi camp to Kanniedood Dam when we came across what first look like a stick lying across the road. It looked a little too perfect and straight and when I got a little closer I used my camera to zoom in on the one side.. it was a snake..

Image

It stayed like this for about 20 minutes, not moving at all.. I edged my car around the snake to see if it was dead but couldn't decide.. after a few more minutes, with lightning speed, it did a 360 deg and left the road and into the long grass.

Image

Image

My question is: was this snake lying in wait like an ambush for something to cross it's path? The back was quite odd, almost the shape of a triangle. Is this normal behaviour?

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 4:34 pm 
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No comments?? :( :( :(

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:27 pm 
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My thought? maybe it was taking warmth from the road .. :? No idea if I am right :roll: perhaps someone else can come up with an explanation

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:45 pm 
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Thanks Dotty but I don't think that it was a case of needing warming up.. the air temp was about 38 deg Celsius and it had been in the early 40's a few hours before..

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:47 pm 
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:thumbs_up: just a thought :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:34 pm 
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Location: Too far away...
I am not by any means a snake expert but I doubt it would be lying so exposed with the intention of hunting....was in greater Kruger some weeks ago and just missed a python of similar size successfully hit and swallow a baby impala....but this python was pretty concealed in longer grass/stump of tree to aid its hunting (I assume).

What I find very curious in your last two pics is the very strange "kink" just behing the head. Is this the triangle on the back you refer to Robbie A? Would also love to hear what snake experts have to say, but perhaps this is an injury...???

Whatever, a great sighting of a beautiful creature!


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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:34 pm 
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Very interesting behaviour indeed - gorgeous creature and very well-captured as well!!!

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:45 pm 
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I think that the kink in its neck is probably a birth defect,as I can see the snake is quite young,and he is probably suffering from it.
I don't know why he would wait in the road,maybe he was just too tired or weak to carry on and wanted a rest.
Or maybe he wanted to commit suicide :?


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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:12 pm 
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A python moving on is ribs(Legs) in such a staight line is very rustig/relaxed(No threat for him).
Various reasons why he waited for your vehicle to approach close may exist, he might have been shedding his skin, affecting the eyesight(Although the picture does not show), might have played dead etc. :hmz:

But maybe an expert can answer. Awesome pic's :clap: :clap:

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:15 pm 
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Goodness Ronnie, what wonderful footage :thumbs_up: thank you.

I look foward to more feedback from "the experts".

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:45 pm 
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Beautiful photos Robbie, I'm no snake expert but that snake looks injured to me...daar is `n kinkel in sy kabel ( nek)....there is a bend it its neck! :hmz:

I can't see how a normal snake will relax on the road in 40+ degrees for so long... can a snake get blisters on a hot road? :hmz:

At first it looked like a puffie to me, but I think it is a python after having a good look! :thumbs_up: :whistle:


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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 10:30 am 
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Ales wrote:
I think that the kink in its neck is probably a birth defect,as I can see the snake is quite young,and he is probably suffering from it.
I don't know why he would wait in the road,maybe he was just too tired or weak to carry on and wanted a rest.
Or maybe he wanted to commit suicide :?


I did have to prevent about 3 cars from driving over it.. Was quite funny in fact.. one of the cars contained some rather loud, intoxicated individuals and after they waited about a minute (I had blocked the road so that no one would come speeding around the corner and ride over the snake),, anyway, they proceeded to hoot at me and got very agitated that I wouldn't let them pass.. they did give a continental over some snake in the road... well the more they created the deafer we became... they then turned around and went back the way they came...

But yes, the way the snake was stretched over the road, it could of easily been run over by any vehicle.

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2011 10:52 am 
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TheunsH wrote:
Beautiful photos Robbie, I'm no snake expert but that snake looks injured to me...daar is `n kinkel in sy kabel ( nek)....there is a bend it its neck! :hmz:



The bend in the neck was maybe just the way it moved.. here is another pick where it was lying quite straight..

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:28 am 
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Then the only thing I can think of is that it is weak and had no idea what it was doing.
He is probably included in the 90% of hatchlings that don't make it very long.

Its a beautiful python, I still haven't gotten the chance to see one in KNP, but I want to see a BIG one.


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 Post subject: Re: Strange Snake Behaviour?
Unread postPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 9:35 pm 
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I'm no snake expert, though I own one, and have owned up to 4 at one stage, and have taken an interest in snakes (primarily becaue my son is crazy about snakes) for many years now. There is no injury here. My conclusion would be that the snake was acquiring and/or conserving energy and only if and when it feels under threat will move, and as mentioned, usually very quickly. And it is possible that it has just had a meal (there seems to be a bit of a bulge in the middle indicating it has eaten) in which case it would certainly be found in open sunlight, for the heat, which will help digestion. This I say from observation of my catpive snake, which, after it has fed, will head immediately for the heating pad, where it will stay for a while. The temperature in the room would be between 25 and 30 degrees, and a steady 27 degrees in the cage. But a bit warmer on the heating pad.

Hope that helps.

Great sighting :thumbs_up: And great action in preventing others from running over it :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:

Cheerio
Noel


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