Saturday, March 7, 2009

A Juvenile Banded Racer

I was happily snoring away in bed the next morning. The time is presumed to be about 8.30 am. Just about then I was woken up by my dad, who was shouting out to me saying that the neighbour living behind had caught a snake from his backyard. I immediately put on my glasses and ran for the camera. After doing so I ran down the stairs and out to the sitout. There, standng on the pale white floor was my neighbour, and infront of him was a small dark snake... A Common Krait! I was surprised that there could still be baby Common Kraits when its not even the time of mating. I asked my neighbour to move it to the gravel, so that it would give a more 'natural' look. Staying about a metre away from it, I took a few shots of it slithering around.
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I noticed it flattening its neck very often. This wasn't an act given from the Common Krait. I was then sure that this wasn't a Common Krait. I remembered seeing a similar looking snake in the Snake Book that I had borrowed recently. After recalling what I saw in the book, I finally managed to identify it. The Juvenile form of the Banded Racer. Alas, the mystery has been solved.
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I kept trying to photograph the snake with its tongue flipping out. After a series of shots, I managed to get a few good photographs of its tongue out. Here's one of them.
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As I slowly moved and photographed this beautiful snake, I noticed it trying to dig into the gravel. It could be a seme-fossorial species, but they are also said to largely inhabit rat holes.
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Anyway, despite having told my parents and my sister that this was a non-venomous snake, they were still convinced that it was a highly venomous Common Krait. They kept warning me not to go to close and that we would have to kill it as soon as possible. But I just could not give in to them. Since they were leaving within a few minutes to the church, I decided to release it once they had left. I could not release it anywhere near, so I got it into a bucket and made it a suitable habitat by adding some gravel, coconut shells and husks as shelter and some leaf litter. I took a shot of it coiled up at one side of the bucket.
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After consulting my grandpa, I got the bucket with the snake and headed towards the scrubland area about a kilometre away from my house. Hardly any people end up visiting that area, so the snake should be safe, and so will the people. As I slowly released it, it flicked out its tongue a few times, and after sensing freedom, it made a dash for the undergrowth. Oh my, so thats why they call these snakes 'Racers'. Only then did I realize how fast it was. Even a human child would not be able to compete with such a fast snake in such an area. I was really intrigued by this particular snake due to its ability. I had then decided that this was indeed one of the most spectacular snakes I've seen so far. Here's the awesome photograph that I took of it as it dashed into the undergrowth.
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This day was just too good. I would have been happy even if I didn't spot a single creatures for the next few days. An Awesome Snake, with an Awesome ability. The Banded Racer. A Juvenile.

8 comments:

Shirls said...

Interesting. I've yet to see a racer in the wild.

Shawn said...

Well in S'pore I have never seen one either...
If it wasn't for my neighbour I woudl not have seen this snake at all.

vishalprasad.blog said...

Looks like Trinket Snake to me

vishalprasad.blog said...

Looks like Trinket Snake to me

vishalprasad.blog said...

Looks like Montane Trinket (Elaphe helenus monticollaris)...

AZN said...

hey dude i jus saw this snake yesturday at my house......i spooked mu mom....i was tryin to figureout which snake this was.....thanks dude

AZN said...

i jus saw dis snake tonight wen it spooked ma mom....i was tryin to findout which snake it was.......thanx man......

Shawn said...

Thanks Guys. AZN, sure, my pleasure! :)

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