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Australian Snakes

Worldwide there are over 2500 species of snakes absolutely identified. Australia has 32 sea snakes and 110 recognised land snakes. It may seem as though we are fortunate in the low amount of different types of snakes; however, Australia has more venomous snakes than non-venomous snakes and we are the only country in the world that can boast this particular statistic. Snakes are cold-blooded, meaning they cannot regulate their body temperatures like all other mammals can. They will need to warm up by some artificial means such as the sun or perhaps curling up on a hot water system.

Most snakes, if not provoked, are perfectly happy to not bother you; however, they can easily confuse the boundaries between humans and themselves. Snakes have evolved over many millions of years and have habitats that are far-reaching and very diversified. Snakes are found in the severe dry and hot deserts to the cool and temperate climates found on our highest peaks which would have snow all over them during the winter months. Possibly the largest congregation of snakes can be found along the Australian coastline and particularly in tropical areas.

As stated, snakes are quite nervous in nature mostly and will quite readily find an escape if their presence is uncovered. Some tips to avoid snakes should be something all people venturing into their possible environment may need to brush up on. Firstly, when walking in grassy or wooded areas it is advisable to wear socks and good-quality shoes and if possible long trousers. Be extremely careful if you are lifting up all large rocks or pieces of timber that may be possible hideout points for snakes. Most Australians love the outdoors and camping is a great family pastime particularly in the warmer months. Please be careful with any items that are left around campsites. Open tents, open swags and any light material can attract a snake to lie under so as to hide during the daytime and also to regulate the temperatures during the peak heat of the day.

Snakes will also venture into built-up areas such as towns and villages and have been known to be found even in large cities where urban development is at its most prolific.. Snakes will venture far and wide in search of both food and a mate. Some snakes can be quite aggressive during the mating and egg-laying period and if discovered should be completely avoided. Snakes are particularly fond of bird aviaries and chicken coops. They are also known to enjoy the odd mouse and rat which we all find as one of their better traits. Large pythons can swallow small dogs and some have even been taken while on the chain which leaves the python also on the chain.

When considering the possibility of a snake entering your home it conjures up quite frightening thoughts and one would want to do their best to eliminate any possibility that this might occur. One way to drastically minimise the entry points of snakes is to ensure that you have adequate insect screens or security window screens on all your windows and self-closing security doors or barrier screen doors on all doorways. If possible in summer months when snakes are most active keep your lawns well trimmed and avoid leaving things such as sheets of roofing products or old timber lying around, particularly in quiet areas such as at the back of the garage.

Most snakes are protected and if you happen to encounter one inside your home then it is wise to avoid any confrontation or contact and immediately ring National Parks and Wildlife in your particular state. You can also contact your local police station or council for further assistance. Do not try and handle any snake; leave this to the experts.


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