It’s spring alright! The rice fields are green and full of joy (for frogs) and the nights are dark and full of lurve… also for frogs. As well as having bats to watch, every evening we can also listen to the chorus of croaking from all directions.
Of course, all of this activity means that other creatures are becoming active too, including this fellow:
This is a Japanese rat snake (Elaphe climacophora) that I spotted while watering the beans. It seemed pretty determined to work its way up the canal, so we figured it was heading out to the big rice fields to find frogs like the one above. Being Australian, I immediately yelled for Kin to grab his camera and he raced up the canal in pursuit.
Unfortunately, his model did NOT feel cooperative. Rat snakes are quite timid (and, apparently, very bitey) so it decided to try and pretend that it wasn’t there and wait for the camera to go away.
Kin was a little disappointed but, as it turns out, he didn’t need to be! When I went for a run along the same canal, I found another friend for him to photograph!
Another rat snake! They must be everywhere at the moment! This one seemed a little less timid than the first and allowed Kin and his camera to get quite close. It was proceeding in the same direction as the other fellow, so there must be something attractive (to snakes) in that part of town.
It seems that Japanese people respond to rat snakes much the same way as Australians do to carpet pythons, so our friends should have a safe journey, wherever they’re going. It was lovely to see these beauties and we wish them well on their travels. It’s also fun giving our U.S. friends the screaming heebie-jeebies with these photos!
Is anyone interesting out and about in your area? Have they come to say hello?