Puff Adder camouflaged in garden leaves scares homeowner

Puff Adder camouflaged in KZN garden leaves scares homeowner

Imagine doing a little gardening, only to discover a deadly snake coiled up in the leaves! That's exactly what happened to a Durban  homeowner who got one major surprise when she realised she wasn't just raking up leaves.

Puff Adder camouflage in garden leaves scares homeowner
Nick Evans
A Puff Adder had chosen her leaf-covered lawn to get cosy! That's when she called Snake Rescue's Nick Evans, who raced to the Upper Highway area to help.

Puff Adders have keeled scales, giving their skin a slightly rough appearance as opposed to the smooth and sometimes shiny appearance of many other snake species.

This, coupled with their chevron patters and mixed colors (usually yellow and black in Midlands, Drakensberg and shades of brown in Northern KZN), allows them to camouflage in the undergrowth really, really well.

They thrive in grassland and savanna areas.

On this occasion, it was in a garden, in a situation where it could easily have been stepped on!

Puff Adders are responsible for many bites throughout South Africa and the rest of Africa.

Interestingly, research has shown more often than not, if stepped on, they won't bite. Of course you don't know if your luck is in or not.

"A friend of mine did telemetry tracking of Puff Adders. On more than one occasion, while trying to spot his signal-emitting Puff Adder in the Bush, he found it under his shoe! And they never bit him," says Nick.

This is a photo of the Puff Adder in the garden. Would you have spotted it easily amidst the leaves?

Garden Puff Adder
Nick Evans
Garden Puff Adder
Nick Evans

Meanwhile, imagine seeing a very large Black Mamba casually slithering into your home, through the lounge and down the passage, past your child's bathroom, and into a bedroom? It happened in Reservoir Hills recently (see the photo below) - and Nick Evans rushed to the rescue.

Snake Rescue Mamba in bedroom
Nick Evans

This was a rather strange and incredible call for Nick, and for many, the stuff of terrifying nightmares!

A family in Durban's Reservoir Hills area had a large Black Mamba come to visit, and not in the 'usual' way! It wasn't discovered in a messy storeroom; it wasn't seen slithering through the garden - it was seen slithering through the front door!

However, as Nick explains, while it could have easily attacked the family, it didn't. Have a listen as to how this unfolded!

Catch Nick in his TV series, Snake Season on the People's Weather Channel on DSTV (180 and 115 on Open View) on Mondays at 6pm with a repeat at 9pm.

Listen to past Snake Rescue episodes via our channel below:

Nick's organisation, KwaZulu-Natal Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, is a chapter of The Lawrence Anthony Earth Organisation.

Contact Nick on 072 809 5806 for information about snake removals in the Greater Durban area. Email him if you'd like to find out about his educational talks. 

Main image courtesy of Nick Evans

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