Working at a school you don’t always see a lot of wildlife, it’s usually too loud and too busy so the wildlife tends to stay away. Thankfully, I’m lucky enough to work in a school that has a very large campus with ponds, fields, forests and meadows for wildlife to live in. This has allowed me to experience wildlife I’ve never seen before simply by stepping out of my office (under the star on the map) and taking a walk through the forest nearby.
When the school breaks up for the holidays and there are no students and very few teachers the wildlife slowly starts to reclaim the school, moving nearer to and sometimes even into the buildings.
One day Carly and I were walking from our office to a building near the front of school when she spotted a snake. It was slithering through the grass near one of the buildings and when it saw us it made a dash for the nearest tree. The snake paused for a moment on one of the trees large roots which gave me just enough time to snap a quick shot of it.
It’s head was so beautiful, I’d never seen a snake that had a head that was so different from the rest of it’s body. I had to try and get a closer look and hopefully a better picture.
With a little bit of persuasion I managed to move the snake into a hollow between two roots where it felt a little more protected and where I could take a closer look.
I love the patterns and colours on its head, what a beautiful snake. I love working somewhere where I can see things like this without even having to go looking.
When I got back to the office, I consulted my snake books and Identified the snake as a Red-necked keelback snake (Rhabdophis subminiatus) a non-venomous species…… or so I thought.
After some more research I discovered an article that showed how this species of snake does indeed have a potentially lethal venom.The article was about someone who was keeping one of these snakes as a pet and it bit him. Not thinking it he was in any danger he didn’t remove the snake straight away which turned out to be a bad move and resulted in him being hospitalised and requiring intensive care. You can read the full article here if you’d like Snake Bite By Red-necked Keelback
Moral of the story be respectful of all snakes and avoid handling them unless you are 100% sure what you’re doing.