5 snakes in Australia - ID requested, please

Discussion in 'Field Herping and Reptile Studies' started by Schapie, Feb 25, 2014.

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  1. Schapie

    Schapie New Member

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    Hi all,

    Last november, I've encountered several snakes. Could you please help me identify these creatures? I tried to catch them on camera.

    Not all of the pictures are showing the entire snake, but I hope it's clear enough to analyze.

    Myself I thought that these are
    1. Eastern Brown,
    2. Juvenile Eastern Brown (due the banded stripes, green with black) or a Coastal Taipan?
    3. Tiger Snake
    4. Tree Snake
    5. Copperhead or a Tiger snake (this last one we saw in the Blue Mountains by the way).

    Thanks very much in advance!
    Regards, Schapie.

    1.Spot: Apollo Bay, Otway NP (VIC)

    Brown-Snake1.jpg

    2. Spot: Apollo Bay, Otway NP (VIC)

    Taipan-closeup-21.jpg

    3. Spot: Great Ocean Road, Twelve Apostles (VIC)
    . Tigersnake.jpg

    4. Spot: Airlie Beach (QLD)
    . Boomslang1.jpg

    5. Spot: Blue Mountains (NSW)
    . Copperhead21.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
  2. AllThingsReptile

    AllThingsReptile Very Well-Known Member

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    if it was in victoria, it is not a taipan

    1. is an Eastern Brown
    3. is a Tiger Snake
    5. is a Copperhead

    2 and 4 are a bit hard to tell, my guess is 2 a smaller tiger snake, but i have no idea about 4..
     
  3. Schapie

    Schapie New Member

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    Thanks very much! :)
     
  4. richoman_3

    richoman_3 Very Well-Known Member

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    lowlands copperhead
    lowlands copperhead
    tiger snake
    4. where is the pic taken?
    highlands copperhead
     
  5. AllThingsReptile

    AllThingsReptile Very Well-Known Member

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    ^i did not even think about the lowlands copperhead, pretty sure your right actually!
     
  6. Dendrobates

    Dendrobates Active Member

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    1, 2 & 5 are all Copperheads. 3 is a Tiger Snake, and 4 I can't tell from that photo.
     
  7. Schapie

    Schapie New Member

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    4. is taken in Queensland, Airlie Beach. The snake was about 30 cm, very slim and had a fairly big head.

    About 1. It indeed looks like the copperhead mentioned, but I thought it was more slender with a dark head and dark eyed then the Copperhead (it hasn't got very bright pupils, just dark eyes)?

    Also, it chased me, whereas no.5 was just quietly enjoying his rest in the bush. Actually, you can't see me in this picture, but I almost stepped on nr. 1 and then it went in an s-shape and rose its head. My boyfriend warned me that there was a snake, just behind my leg. Luckily I wore gaiters. I kept still and then slowly moved away and then ran, as fast as I could. Because the snake was in between my boyfriend and me, I stood still, after running uphill and after chasing me a couple of meters (it had a hard time going up) the snake decided to leave.

    I would be glad to if turns out to be a Copperhead, cause this snake scared me so much, but looking at its behaviour, I guess that it is an Eastern Brown. What do you think?
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
  8. gus11

    gus11 Active Member

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    Maybe if you were a bit more specific about where these shots were taken, people could give more reliable ID's. saying there all taken during the day at the otways victoria but turns out number 5 is in the blue mountains and number 4 is from airlie beach (probably at night) makes it fairly difficult to assess with any reliability. Image 4 is not a boomslang, if its from airlie beach, probably a brown tree snake but no one could be confident based on the image.
     
  9. Schapie

    Schapie New Member

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    Hi, just added the spots. Sorry for the confusion. Thanks mate.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
  10. Asharee133

    Asharee133 Very Well-Known Member

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    Going off the 'big head' and colouration, I'd say it's a brown tree snake.
     
  11. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 Guest

    The accuracy of IDs are invariably related to the degree of detail provided, primarily photographic but also written.
    1. With tan colour with dark patch on head and nape and relatively slender build, it is either a juvenile Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis) or a Little Whip Snake (Parasuta flagellum) in that area. Given the black head patches go down the side of the head to the ventrals and that there appears to be a pale area across the nape, it is almost certainly a juvenile brown. This fits with the defensive behaviour described, although Little Whip Snakes are known to flatten the body and form tight coils when provoked. EBs have pale brown eye colour while LWs posses a black iris.
    2. Appears robust for its length and banded in colour. Rare specimens of EBs retain some degree of juvenile banding. However, based on what I can make out of the colour and width of banding and the shape of the dorsal scales, I would say it is most likely a Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus) but cannot guarantee it.
    3. Definitely a Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus) – distinctive colour pattern.
    4. As explained by gus11 one cannot make a definitive call on image with such low resolution. It is thin and appears to have some degree of reddish brown banding. Being taken at night in the area indicated, assuming it was a snake, it could likely be a small Brown Tree Snake (Boiga irregularis). If this were the case then the head would have been wide and distinct from the neck, with very large cat-like eyes. Only you are in a position to make a call on it.
    5. There are three possible contenders that are very dark in colour, can display dark edging to the ventral scales and occur in the Bathurst region. The Eastern Small-eyed Snake (Crytophis nigrescens) can display dark banding on the anterior edge of some of the ventrals, usually no so definite. It is also a nocturnal species. That leaves the Highlands Copper Head (Austrelaps ramsayi) and the Red-bellied Black Snake (Pseudechis poryphyiacus), which can both display black edging to the posterior edge of the ventrals, although more common in RBBs. Copperheads normally have the lower lateral rows of scales a light colour in contrast to their dorsal colour. In RBBs the reddish ventral pigment usually extends up onto the lower laterals as well, the exception being those individuals which lack the red pigment on their ventrals. Bottom line, it could be either a Copperhead or a RBB in my opinion.

    Blue

     
  12. Schapie

    Schapie New Member

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    Very insightful. Thanks very much for the extensive reply. Very much appreciated, Blue. Regards, Schapie.
     
  13. richoman_3

    richoman_3 Very Well-Known Member

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    what the hell
    1,2,5 and are all copperheads,
    in that area browns and little whips do not occur. infact it is the EXACT OPPOSITE habitat to what they prefer.
    and what kind of little whip is nearly the size of the path?
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
  14. Dendrobates

    Dendrobates Active Member

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    A good look at the body shape and scale structure of 1, 2 and 5 is all that's needed to say that they are all species of Copperhead (the first two being A. superbus, and the last being A. ramsayi).
    If you take picture 4 and blow it up, the head shape of a Brown Tree Snake can be seen.
     
  15. bigguy

    bigguy Very Well-Known Member

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    Richoman. I agree 1 and 5 are copperheads for sure. 3 is definitely a tiger. 4 Cant say with any confidence but would agree it is more likely a Brown Tree. However, when I look at the pic of number 2 I can only see a partial body from the leaves, but it is most definitely striped at equal intervals so I agree with Blue. This is more likely another Tiger. No mater how I look at the pic I cannot for the love of me see a copperhead
     
  16. richoman_3

    richoman_3 Very Well-Known Member

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    Where are these stripes???
     
  17. bigguy

    bigguy Very Well-Known Member

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    The stripes are easily seen on the body. I can see four on the small section of body seen through the leaves. They are a gun metal blue colour spaced at equal intervals.
     
  18. richoman_3

    richoman_3 Very Well-Known Member

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    They just look like light reflection
    if they were bands they would be much more prominent
     
  19. bigguy

    bigguy Very Well-Known Member

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    Tigers do not always have prominent banding. I disagree that they are light reflection. Each stripe is the same width, and each stripe is spaced the same distance from the next, and each stripe is the same colour. Just to much of a coincidence that they are shadows
     
  20. Schapie

    Schapie New Member

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    Thanks for you help, all. I still not know which snakes it exactly have been (there is a lot of wisdom here!).

    I did found this list of snakes in the Otway NP. There are 4 snake types living over there, e.g., Eastern/Mainland Tiger snake, Lowland Copperhead snake, White-lipped snake and the Eastern Brown snake.

    http://www.greatoceanwalk.asn.au/general_info/otway_fauna_list/Otways_fauna_lists09.pdf

    To make up my mind:

    No. 1 Still don't know. Difficult snake. As mentioned by the people in this tread, it must be either a Lowland Copperhead, an Eastern Brown snake or even an Eastern Tiger snake (as mentioned in this tread, there are Tiger snakes, which are copperhead look-a-likes). See also: Tiger Snake - Australian Museum I've submitted an ID request at the Museum of Vic and will keep u posted.

    No. 2 Eastern Tiger snake. It does has bands, green and dark ones and this pattern matches this snake perfectly. I would guess?

    No.3. Tiger Snake indeed.

    No. 4 Brown Tree snake.

    No 5. Lowland Copperhead, looking at its buff shape, dark skin with yellowish belly and shy nature. Beautiful snake!

    Thanks everyone, very much!
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2014
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