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Two red-bellied black snakes entwined to mate on the green grass


Kristy Gray had a front-row ticket to an impressive exhibition of agility when she spotted two red-bellied black snakes grappling in her yard. Several lone snakes have been spotted since the beginning of September, according to Kristy from Topi Topi on the NSW Mid North Coast.

She said that they had spotted two pairs out in the open in less than a week, which was concerning and probably related to the dry, hot weather. According to Great Lakes snake specialist John Smith, the snakes weren’t ᴍᴀᴛɪɴɢ despite how they seemed in the photos.

According to John, when they are ᴍᴀᴛɪɴɢ, they just lay next to each other with their tails overlapping rather than intertwining or standing up like they do in the images. He said that it is most likely that these two are sparring or competing for a female’s attention.


They didn’t often Bɪᴛᴇ one another; instead, they simply got entangled and continued doing so until one gave up and left. Kristy was thrilled to have the chance to see soᴍᴇᴛʜing like this, but you can understand why she had her doubts. Standing so ᴄʟᴏsᴇ to the snakes was a little unsettling. But she couldn’t help but take the chance to take their picture.

Eastern Aᴜsᴛʀᴀʟɪᴀ is home to the elapid snake species known as the red-bellied black snake. Although a Bɪᴛᴇ from it is typically not lethal and is less ᴘᴏɪsᴏɴᴏᴜs than that of other Aᴜsᴛʀᴀʟɪᴀn elapid snakes, its venom has the potential to cause severe morbidity.


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