Almost everday on my way to or from work I see at least one DOR (Dead on the Road) snake and one day I even had a close encounter with one which wasn’t as flat as I’d thought which I found out as it struck out at me as I drove past it.
Judging by the look of the DOR snakes I guessed the snakes must be crossing or basking on the road at night or early in the mornings as they still look quite fresh when I see them on my way to work. With this in mind I have set myself the task of trying to figure out when the snakes are on or crossing the road in the hopes I’ll be able to see more snakes and even save a few from becoming flat snakes.
I’m not much of a morning person so I’m investigating when the snakes are around at night first, then maybe further down the line I’ll start to get out just after sunrise to see what is on the roads in the mornings.
Here are my findings so far….
The first live snake I saw on the roads was this beautiful Banded Kukri Snake (Oligodon fasciolatus) at around 9pm.
About a week ago after not more than ten or twenty minutes into one of my searches for snakes I spotted another gorgeous snake, this time it was a Rainbow Water Snake (Enhydris enhydris). At first it wasn’t moving and as I pulled up to it I expected the worst, was it another DOR snake? I looked at the snake for a while and I couldn’t see any visible signs of injury, infact it was a beautiful specimen with a lovely healthy irridescent sheen to its scales.
I had seen another rainbow water snakethat evening but it had crossed the road and slipped into a rice paddy before I could get a better look at it. (both snakes were spotted between 7:45 and 8:00pm).
Later that week I spotted a Brahminy Blind Snake (Indotyphlops braminus) but unluckily for me it litterally slipped out of my fingers and was able to exxcape into some leaf litter and dissapear…….. very frustrating as this is the second time I’ve had one escape from me.
This weekend I hit the road again in search of snakes but this time the weather was truly cold and after driving around covered in goosebumps without seeing anything I decided it was too cold for me and probably too cold for snakes to be out and headed home. I felt a little defeated and tried to lighten my mood by joking to myself that after driving around freezing for an hour I’d probably see something near my house on the way home.
When I arrived home (around 9:45pm) I decided to have a quick walk in the field opposite my house and my wishful thinking paid off when I spotted a serpentine form making its was across the field less than 30m from my front gate. It was a beautiful Yellow-spotted Keelback (Xenochrophis flavipunctatus) out in search of frogs probably, it was an excellent end to my night.
You can read more about the Banded Kukri Snake or the other wildlife I’ve seen out and about on the raods at night here –>Wildlife by Torchlight
You can also see the beautiful snake I found in my garden here –> Slithering Surprise