Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Spotted in the garden

An eastern brown snake.

Appearance: any colour from brown to black to orange, with or without black stripes - want to test your luck identifying it?

Distribution: every damn place except Tasmania but including the Lance Cove River National Park, which is on the other side of my back fence.

Is it dangerous?

In Australia there are about 3,000 snake bites per year, of which 200 to 500 receive antivenom; on average one or two will prove fatal. About half the deaths are due to bites from the brown snake; the rest mostly from tiger snake, taipan and death adder. Some deaths are sudden, however in fact it is uncommon to die within four hours of a snake bite.
- Good to know that it is uncommon to die within 4 hours.

The snake wrangler came to catch it and was all "oh fark" when he saw that it was not a common python as he believed it to be. He spend his time futzing about and patting his back pocket to make sure his compression bandage was still there. He didn't manage to catch it but I'm not sure that I blame him. At least it wasn't one of these.


Mike Bogle said...

Gulp - that's not a neighbor you want dropping by unannounced. An unfortunate reality of living in the more lovely bushy areas I guess.

We had a big one slither through our yard as well a couple of years back. Maddie was not 2 feet behind me stark naked and the snake was 2 feet in front of us - fortunately moving the opposite direction.

Ever since then I've been a big chicken during the hotter months of the year. Maddie knows about checking for snakes. I just hope I haven't made her paranoid too...

Leesha said...

Id be all oh fark too and Im not even a snake wrangler.

Mark Lawrence said...

I'm kinda glad that somewhere in our evolutionary memory, humans are hard-wired to be scared of snakes. Oh fark indeed!

But it's not just the bushy areas that cop them - we lost our cat to a tiger snake (snake bite test confirmed it, as we never saw the damn thing) about three or four years ago in our previous suburban weatherboard house.

In may have been the long grass in the backyard (my bad) or the fact that reptile and snake breeders lived three doors up from us, or the fact that our are of Northern Melbourne does get snakes in warm weather, but for some reason, a tiger snake took up residence, killed our cat, and moved out again. B*strd!

Don't you wish you had a mongoose?

unique_stephen said...

Not sure they are native, but a rabid numbat would be a good replacement

Ms Smack said...

Known fatalities

* A 16-year-old boy from Sydney died on 13th January 2007 after being bitten on the hand in a reserve at Whalan.[3]

That wikipedia reference is my nephew, Hayden who died. He was running thru a reserve to watch the local cricket game with a mate and stepped on it. When the snake reared up, he thought it was a stick and flicked it away.

The biggest person to feel his death was his brother, less than 12 months apart, Aaron.

Be careful about these. I reckon that 4 hours is wrong...

unique_stephen said...

Jesus Smack, my god, that's terrible. I have no idea what to say.