Local Resident

dsc01045Well there we go ladies and gents another week or so gone by with updates on how our animals are doing and a few other stories.

for those who don’t like snakes very much don’t worry there will only be two every month unless someone would like more, im a snake fanatic so i thought i will give everyone some information now and again.

The snake of the day will be of our local resident here at the lodge, not to worry she wont do anything if you leave her in peace.

The guys here know by now that i am crazy about snakes so they kept it from me for awhile till i discovered it today, they are afraid that i might just go and play with it.

A lovely estimated 1,2meter boomslang Dispholidus tyus. For those who don’t know the boomslang is the most venomous snake in southern Africa.

Just a couple of interesting facts quickly before i tell you about the venom and what it does.

The color variation in boomslang is greater than in any other snake in southern Africa. Juveniles are light brown to grey with a stippling of blue which is why they are usually confused with the vine snake Thelotornis capensis. The adult females will be a light to olive brown with a dirty white belly and males might be green to olive green with or without black interstitial skin. The adults usually get confused with the black and green mambas Dendroaspis polylepis and Dendroaspis angusticeps.

Apparently our lovely lady has been a resident for the last month or so. Seen many times basking in the sun high up on one of the branches, boomslang unobtrusive and very shy so will always stay away to avoid confrontations. Spends most of the day in shrubs and trees.

If provoked it will inflate the neck area twice the original size to warn off any treats and tries to escape it very rarely bites, most victims are snake handlers. That old tale where a snake just drops from a tree and bites for no reason, come now. You basically have to grip it mid body shake it around and provoke it really badly before something serious might happen but i wont recommend that you should try it. It has slow but very potent haemotoxic venom; it affects the blood system and has to be treated within 24-48hours.

Things to look out for:

· has enormous eyes and short stubby head

· may inflate the neck and most of the body under serious provocation

· spends most of the time in trees and shrubs

· active during the day

Story by: Casper Marais- Kapama River Lodge Ranger



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