Thursday, July 30, 2009

Snakes Alive!

Wonder why I'm showing you a photo of an earthworm? Ha! This, according to friend and wildlife photographer extraordinaire Jim Angy, is a blind snake. Jim and his family were at his father-in-law's house when one of his kids (grown) brought this little critter to Jim's attention. It's about the size of a worm, but it has scales and is not segmented. According to Wikipedia, it's little tiny eyes are covered with little tiny scales, rendering it nearly blind, but able to distinguish light. It is most often found in Africa and Asia, but as with nearly everything else in this world grown smaller, is now found in many other places, including the back yard of Jim's father-in-law. It lives underground in ant or termite nests or similar dark, moist places, and reproduces without fertilization - the word parthenogenesis was tossed around in the Wikipedia writeup. Its diet consists of the eggs and larvae of ants and termites. There was no mention of what this little lady does for fun - we know it is a female, as parthenogenesis results in only females of the species, apparently. I read all this and find it vaguely depressing - away from home, blind, living underground, no romance ....

On a happier note, is this not one of the sweetest snakes you've seen recently? This is an immature black racer, and I think it's cute as a button. Jim got this photo at Sebastian Inlet when he was visiting Ed Perry.


R.Powers said...

Thanks for sharing Jim's snake shots. That racer pup is a cutie.

Vickie said...

Amazing earthworm-like snake. I guess no one would know it was a snake if they weren't paying close attention. And on the juvenile snake, that's the first time I've thought "cute" while looking at a snake! But I agree.