Snake hole in the wall

April 24, 2009 by
Filed under: Snakes and Lizards 
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An extraordinary discovery in a cliff

Snake Cliff Face -

Sandstone cliff with holes and cracks formed by thousands of years of sea spray, salt, water and sandblasting.

Ever been on a walk in a National Park or in the bush somewhere and got up close and personal with a slithery animal of the legless kind and got a bit of a fright? The other day my family and I went exploring the seaside rock shelves in Bouddi National Park, near Killcare on the NSW Central Coast, and we came across the most extraordinary thing. In the sheer sandstone cliff faces, thousands of years of wind and rain erosion have created a myriad of holes and fragile features that have become the home for an interesting snake. So what are these people in the photo looking at?

Snake Hole 1

Getting up close to the cliff face

Zooming in a little closer to the cliff reveals a texture and colour that is quite out of place.

Snake Hole 2

Brown Tree Snake in sandstone erosion holes

It looks as though there is wildlife in the face and a snake has made its home in the erosion holes.

A brown tree snake (Boiga irregularis) is using these holes for shelter during the day, and at night come out of their holes to hunt for small birds, lizards and probably Brown Antechinus (Antechinus stuartii) as well.

The brown tree snake is a common snake along the east coast of Australia and within Bouddi National Park, the green tree snake (Dendrelaphis punctulata) also occurs and has been seen to cohabitat these sandstone holes as well.

Snake Hole 3 -

Close up of the brown Tree Snake

The brown tree snake is an aggressive snake to about 1.8m (6 feet) in length and will strike repeatedly if threatened. Best to leave them alone as they are venomous and it could really spoil your bushwalk if you get bitten.

The next time you go for a walk in the wild, have a look at cliff faces and you may find something as interesting as a snake or maybe even the nest of a raptor such as a peregrine falcon.

The brown tree snake was accidentally introduced to the Island of Guam in the Pacific during the second world war, and has become such a pest that it is driving some of Guam’s native birds to extinction.

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One Response to “Snake hole in the wall”
  1. Jeff Drudge says:

    Awesome! Im jealous

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