Meeting A Snake

I love being eye-to-eye when taking snake photos.  Soon as I determine a snake I come across is harmless and its safe to do so, I’m on my belly and composing snake portraits.  If I came across more snakes in my wanderings, I’d likely start a Snakes Of Whatever Instagram and pretend to have conversations with them about their lives.

Sadly, I don’t come across as many snakes as I would like, so that is unlikely to happen.

Normally I wouldn’t spend enough time with a snake, or get close enough to it, to aggravate it or otherwise make a pest of myself.  This time though, I gave myself permission to spend some time evaluating Mr. Snake.

SunsetSnake4bweb

Our little friend here had been through some sort of trauma and was looking a little worse for wear.  I’m not a snake expert, but I thought to give him a good inspection before backing off or scooping him up.

His right eye was red and likely unable to see anything and he had a pretty impressive gash bisecting his face and mouth.  My concern was that he might not be capable of eating and while I mostly leave wildlife alone, I don’t much like leaving them to starve if I can help it.

I watched him for a while and got close enough to encourage movement and a bit of defensive posturing.  His tongue flicked in and out and he turned to follow my progress, seeming to keep a good awareness of where I was, even without the use of his right eye.  His mouth, while looking pretty gnarly, looked like it was healing.  He moved well and didn’t seem emaciated.  I know snakes can go a while without eating and hoped that with his wounds healing he was already able to eat or on his way to being able to do so.

I decided not to stress him further by removing him from his environment.

SunsetSnake2web

And now I’m considering studying up on herpetology so I have a better understand of snakes and snake health should I come across an injured snake in the future.  How about it, my herp friends, where would start in such an education?

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