A couple of hours ago DH walked into my office looking decidedly paler than normal.
“Do I look green?” he asked.
“Very.” Well, I was only being honest.
“There’s a reason…” he paused for effect, “… I just saw a snake.”
Now that in my book is reason enough to make anyone green. Turns out the snake was relaxing in our pool filter, warming up near the newly installed solar heating. The little dear was black with a red belly. In short – a red bellied black snake. And yes, it is classified as a venomous snake.
(Photo taken by: Pavel German)
The good news is, it is not known to be lethal to adults. The bad news is, no research exists about children and bites from these snakes.
So how did hubby discover it? He was showing off the new solar heating system to his friend. (Must be a guy thing, because when my girl friends come and visit, we don’t take trips down to check out the pool filter.) Anyway, according to DH, one minute he was pointing out some pipe or another to his mate, and the next his mate was physically hauling him away from said filter. I’d have thanked his friend for saving my husband, but said friend beat such a hasty treat, the pool gate was still clanging into place behind him by the time he’d screeched up the road and around the corner as fast as his car would take him. (He’s requested a snake death certificate before he or his family will ever step foot back on our property. The wuss.)
So, back to the snake. Did you know red bellied black snakes are very interesting by virtue of the fact that they give birth to up to 40 LIVE young at a time? Charming fact. We phoned wild life rescue services immediately. Yes, I am a mother. No, the idea of rearing 40 wee snakelets does not make me clucky or broody in any manner or form.
Peter from Wildlife Services arrived shortly thereafter. He even managed to see the snake – 5 seconds before it disappeared through a hole beneath the filter. In that short time, Peter established the snake was only about 1 meter long, and therefore not of snake bearing age. Thank heavens! We haven’t seen it since. We tried to flood it out. We tried to be dead quiet and lure it out. My 6 year old even tried to charm it out with the didgeridoo. Turns out the six year old is pretty good at the didgeridoo – but snakes don’t have ears. (Otherwise I’m sure that would have done the trick. :-D)
So we did the only thing we could. We sealed up the hole. Peter seems certain there is another hole somewhere that the snake can crawl out of. One that leads into the reserve backing onto onto our property. I hope he’s right. As much as I don’t like the idea of a venomous snake sharing our pool area, I don’t like him being trapped under there either. Poor thing.
Now I pose the question to you: Anyone feel like coming over for a swim?