Saturday, August 22, 2009

That Snake Story

G'day Everyone,
I promised to relate the story about the Tiger Snake and the Bug Blitz kids.

As the schools arrived, the children were addressed by several people regarding the procedures for the day. Basically each school was split into 6 groups and given a timetable to follow so that they moved around the site and attended each of the 6 activities - Frogs of Victoria, Water Testing, Mystery Science Object, Discovery Nature Walk, Reptiles of the Region and Regeneration (tree planting).

Sean the reptile man advised all the children that snakes would be around. That it was the ideal time, early in the season and the weather was warm, and this was prime Tiger Snake country. He gave them some advice on what to do if they saw one.

On the nature walk with our second group, Ron and I were summoned urgently by two boys who had spotted a snake just off the track. They did exactly as told - remained still and called for an adult.

The whole group got nice views of a large tiger warming up in the sun beside his log. We got a picture or two and summoned Sean.

Sean carefully took one step off the track, picked up the snake which objected a little to having its sunbaking session interrupted, then popped it into his bag. He did it so quickly and expertly, I didn't get a picture.

We then discussed what to do with it. Sean could relocate it straight away, or hold it for the three days and release it when the exercise was all over. He gave us another alternative which we opted for. He knew of a venom extracting program at the Australian Reptile Park in NSW. They collect venom from as diverse a range of snakes as possible, and make it available to research laboratories and for the production of anti venom.

The kids were impressed that THEIR snake was going to be given the royal treatment for the rest of its life, and perhaps contribute to some future scientific breakthrough. Ron and I 'dined out' on the story with all the following groups, and it helped to keep them ON the track.

1 comment:

  1. That's one good snake story - plus I like the idea of using it for motivation.