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Herps In The News Local or national articles where reptiles or amphibians have made it into the news media. Please cite sources.

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Old 06-04-2018, 02:35 PM   #1
bcr229
A deadly tiger snake every eight metres...

Love the advice for tourists at the end of the article. Here's some from me: go sunbathe somewhere else!

A deadly tiger snake every eight metres: Inside the tiny Australian island infested with aggressive reptiles - and they've adapted to survive without water

By Brittany Chain For Daily Mail Australia

Published: 12:03 EDT, 3 June 2018 | Updated: 18:13 EDT, 3 June 2018

A tiny island less than a quarter the size of Bondi Beach has become a breeding ground for deadly tiger snakes.

Minuscule Carnac Island, just off the coast of Perth on Australia's west coast, is home to at least 400 of the ultra-aggressive reptiles.

Discovered by a French explorer in 1803, the island was used as a prison to hold Indigenous Australians before being turned into a quarantine station.

Now, it's the safe haven for a thriving population of tiger snakes, who enjoy the luxury of having no predators on the island.

There is approximately three tiger snakes to every 25 square metres - which equates to one of the deadly reptiles every few steps.

Snakes share their home with sea lions, dolphins and an array of marine and bird wildlife.

While there is no permanent fresh water supply, the snakes have, scarily so, adapted to the conditions and survive with minimal water.

While there is no evidence as to how the snakes initially arrived to the area, it is rumoured that a man named Lindsay 'Rocky' Vane dumped his tiger snake collection on the island in 1929 after his first wife died of a tiger snake bite.

In November 2006, David Attenborough visited the island with a BBC film crew to record a reptile documentary.

The snakes should not be approached under any circumstances, and are the fifth most venomous in the world

Attenborough noted that majority of the island's snakes were in fact blind.

This is caused by birds defending their chicks by pecking at the snakes' eyes.

In contrast to what one would expect of a blind animal, the snakes were not negatively impacted by their blindness, simply relying more heavily upon scent, feasting on immobile prey.

Carnac island is thus far the only place that Attenborough has noticed this.

'In terms of island snakes, this is probably one of the densest populations in the world,' Animal Plant Mineral biologist Dr Mitchell Ladyman told Nine News.

Tourists visiting the island are urged to stay on the beach, and to under no conditions approach the vegetation without shoes on.
 
Old 06-05-2018, 10:19 AM   #2
Donald C
If I remember correctly, I saw a documentary a long while ago that made the claim that the 'aggression' in tiger snakes was in fact a high defensiveness from the fact that their eyesight was actually very, very poor.
 
Old 06-05-2018, 12:28 PM   #3
Lucille
People actually pay to visit there
https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti...Australia.html
 
Old 06-07-2018, 07:49 PM   #4
hotlips
Quote:
Originally Posted by Donald C View Post
If I remember correctly, I saw a documentary a long while ago that made the claim that the 'aggression' in tiger snakes was in fact a high defensiveness from the fact that their eyesight was actually very, very poor.
That's typical for snakes of all kinds: they're labeled "aggressive" when they're only defending themselves. They need way better legal representation.

But I don't think I'll be taking that tour...
 
Old 06-07-2018, 09:05 PM   #5
Donald C
Quote:
Originally Posted by hotlips View Post
That's typical for snakes of all kinds: they're labeled "aggressive" when they're only defending themselves. They need way better legal representation.

But I don't think I'll be taking that tour...
My interpretation of the defensiveness was about on-par with an animal with multiple layers of retained eye caps as being equivalent. Personally, I'd love to take the tour, just so long as I had a good set of boots and a decent hook.
 

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