It is currently December 11th, 2017, 2:55 pm

All times are UTC - 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 3 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Help me ID this ratsnake ... I know you can!
PostPosted: September 1st, 2017, 10:47 pm 
User avatar

Joined: September 26th, 2012, 5:45 am
Posts: 73
Location: Taiwan
Hi there,

I was thinking of giving this post a title like, "Excellent ratsnake pics!" to lure readers in, but decided that would be cruel given the rubbish I'm about to display. Nothing excellent here, just a couple of woeful snaps taken while having a frustrating encounter a few days ago. But maybe if I pose them as a fun challenge you'll be more indulgent?

Despite Taiwan's supposed abundance of ratsnakes, the last time I saw my one and only of the "common" big species (Big-eyed, Oriental, King) was five years ago. I was about ready to declare them extinct in Taiwan, willing to ignore the plentiful pics posted by other people, but then a few days ago I managed to see two within three days ... I think. I completely failed to get decent photos of either, leaving positive IDs in doubt, but I'm ready to admit now that there might be one or two specimens on the island.

Anyway, despite failing abjectly to get any pics of the first individual, I did manage to grab a couple of shots of the second one, right before an attempt at coaxing it out of the bush. I got hands on it, but when it started hissing and thrashing I knew I'd lost the battle for heart and mind, so decided to let it go on its way. Times have been tough for wildlife in a summer of record-breaking heat and dryness, and I didn't want to stress it unduly for the sake of a photo. I really could have worked the situation better, but various factors (a new camera, leaving my hook at the last junction, being taken completely by surprise, ...) left me with only three usable photos and no good views of the upper body.

For reasons of size (2 metres, give or take), general appearance and geographic distribution, my guess narrows down to either the Asian king ratsnake (Elaphe carinata), or the Oriental ratsnake (Ptyas mucosa). The plain tail and general pattern and colouration suggest the former to me. What do you think? Anything else it could be?

Oh, and while I have no other experience with the odour of snake musk, one other reason to believe this might have been a king ratsnake, a.k.a. Stinking Goddess, was the fact that two days after handling it my hand still reeked like a bottle of Sex Panther. It made for a rough couple of days at work.


Attachments:
0825 rat snake - 1.jpg
0825 rat snake - 1.jpg [ 455.21 KiB | Viewed 694 times ]
0825 rat snake - 2.jpg
0825 rat snake - 2.jpg [ 527.16 KiB | Viewed 694 times ]
Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Help me ID this ratsnake ... I know you can!
PostPosted: September 2nd, 2017, 1:29 am 
User avatar

Joined: May 12th, 2014, 4:28 pm
Posts: 4
Location: China
I think it should be a Elaphe carinata.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Help me ID this ratsnake ... I know you can!
PostPosted: September 2nd, 2017, 9:08 am 
User avatar

Joined: September 26th, 2012, 5:45 am
Posts: 73
Location: Taiwan
And I think you should be right. Thanks!


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 3 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Darian, Exabot [Bot] and 21 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to: