What snake is this?

Discussion in 'Reptile and Amphibian Identification' started by BigBob, Oct 30, 2013.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. BigBob

    BigBob New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi guys, I have recently had a couple snakes on my property. They are not overly aggressive however don't move on without a bit of effort. I have done a bit of research but still not convinced on what species they are. I originally thought they were Keelbacks (may still be) however they do not have the ridge down the middle of their backs as in some pics. Could they be Rough Scaled snakes or something else?? I am in the Noosa Eumundie area. As I have small kids and animals I am keen to find out whether they are venomous or not. Thanks.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. PythonLegs

    PythonLegs Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2010
    Messages:
    1,020
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Weipa
    Keelback.
     
  3. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Messages:
    3,861
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Marsden
    I am pretty sure that in the second picture that I can see a loreal scale present which would indicate keelback but if in doubt treat then as venomous.
     
  4. thomasssss

    thomasssss Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2011
    Messages:
    2,381
    Likes Received:
    0
    does look like a keelback (and probably is) looks like it has the loreal scale too , its a scale that colubrids have between the scale just infront of the eye and the scale joined to the nostril from what ive read and been told elapids dont have this , its a good feature to help tell the two apart , if you google it you will see some good images that show exactly what it is

    andy beat me to it , damn im a slow typer haha
     
  5. baker

    baker Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2011
    Messages:
    610
    Likes Received:
    311
    Location:
    Brisbane
    100% Keelback, Tropidonophis mairii. In the second picture there is a loreal scale present which is one of the defining features of colubrids from elapids. Also the head shape is completely wrong for a rough scale with them having a much wider more square shaped head with keelbacks like this guy having a much more triangular shaped head.
    Cheers Cameorn
     
  6. TrueBlue

    TrueBlue Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Messages:
    4,606
    Likes Received:
    18
    Location:
    QLD
    The pic of the animal you posted is a keelback.
    But you get both keelbacks and roughies in the Eumundi/Nossa area. So you may encounter both on your property.
     
  7. Bushman

    Bushman Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2010
    Messages:
    2,072
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    in situ
    I suspect that this beautiful snake was a Keelback (Tropidonophis mairii).
    Reasons being: the presence of a loreal scale, rounded head shape compared to a Roughie (as mentioned by Baker), some scale damage, slight kinking and uncharacteristically limp posture for a wild snake in the close presence of a predator.
     
  8. $NaKe PiMp

    $NaKe PiMp Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2007
    Messages:
    2,946
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Browntown
    yep harmless keelback
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 31, 2013
  9. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 Guest

    Shall I organise the lynch mob? I appreciate that you see far too much unnecessary slaying of snakes Rob but until we know the full circumstances one really cannot jump to conclusions.

    There is one very clear puncture mark and a few other likelies. The kinked back is typical of the breaks in the backbone that result from a snake being violently shaken in a dog’s mouth. There is also a straight edged wound with no apparent fluid having issued from it as there are no sand grains sticking to this area, as there are in other areas. So if you asked me to guess what had happened, I’d guess that the dog took to the snake and the owner, after becoming aware of what was happening, got the dog away. As the snake was still moving, probably nerve twitches that occur after death, the owner has attempted to ‘put it out of it’s misery’ using a not-too-sharp straight edged object, probably only to find that did not make any difference. But, that is all hypothetical. Whether it is correct or not, it adds no worth to this thread. I would add that anyone who has seen an ID thread on APS where the OP has admitted to either killing a snake or finishing the job, is very likely to be extremely reluctant to reveal any details of how a snake met its end on their property.


    What seems to have been neglected is to state the obvious. The scales on the snake have raised ridges running along the middle of each scale. These are called keeled. While some Death Adders have keeled scales they have short and very squat bodies with very a non-tapering tail and a large triangular head. That leaves only two possible candidates for your snake, the Keelback (Trop mairii) and the Rough-scaled Snake (Tropodechis carinatus). The former, as stated, is non-venomous and entirely harmless. The latter is dangerously venomous. To the untrained they look alike and would readily be confused. Given that field IDs often involve moving snakes, this only adds to the confusion. Unless you are certain, it is better to assume that a snake make be dangerously venomous. Do not make the mistake that small snake are not as dangerous because there are quite a few dangerously venomous snake’s whose young can deliver a lethal bite at 20-30 cm.


    So what to do? Watch the snake at a safe distance e.g. 3m and phone for a snake relocator. Keep continuous eye contact with it until the relocator can arrive. If you have kids or pets, get rid of all snake hiding places around the dwelling – grass short, nothing loose sitting on the ground, rockeries sealed with concrete between rocks, bottom of all bushy shrubs trimmed well above ground. Under these conditions, any snake will be a transient visitor.


    A significant percentage of fatal snake bites result from individuals attempting to kill snakes. Yet snakes would rather avoid an encounter with humans if given the choice. Australian snakes are not aggressive but they will defend themselves if attacked or cornered, like most animals. There is a very simple rule when it comes to snakes.... if you leave them alone, they will leave you alone!


    Blue


    PS. I concur that the presence of a loreal scale can be distinguished. The upper labials are dark-edged, a characteristic of Keelbacks but not the RS. Both eyes are visible as the sides of the head of a Keelback slope inwards versus vertical in the RS. The most obvious feature is the diagonal ‘checker-board’ patterning of the dark scales whereas in the RS they are always in a transverse band even if not contiguous.

     
  10. BigBob

    BigBob New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2013
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks everyone for all the info. Just to clarify, this snake and the others we have seen on the property have all lived to see another day. We do NOT believe in killing snakes whether they are venomous or not. The snake in the picture provided came out of an area where an earth moving machine had been operating. The snake was relocated to a safer area and seemed fine when released. Cheers.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page