Animals

Hunting for Snakes on Koh Chang

Video ofvenomous snakes on Koh Chang and Koh Kood

Video ofvenomous snakes on Koh Chang and Koh Kood

Domi is a regular visitor but rather than spend his days lazing on the beach, he’s out every day in the jungle looking for snakes on Koh Chang.  The reason being he’s an avid herpetologist.  Which is plain English means he likes these creatures a lot for some reason.

His latest trip was in November 2015.  He sent me a few photos of the snakes that he’d seen both on Koh Chang and Koh Kood, but he also took this video which includes some great footage of them.  They’re lurking everywhere but you probably won’t see unless you know where to look.

The chances of seeing a snake close up are very low unless you’re in the right place ant the right time.  And even though some of Thailand’s deadliest snakes live on the island, the possibility of being bitten by one is very slim – it’s not something that’s going to happen. It’s one of those irrational fears.  ( The only time I’ve come close to seeing someone bitten by a snake was on a jungle trek when we walked across the island and the guide was attacked by a King Cobra.  And that’s something that’s virtually unheard of – as snakes don’t go out of their way to try to harm people. )

The most venomous snakes tend live by water – so any you see which are roadkill probably weren’t too dangerous when they were alive.  But if you are walking by quiet stretches of riverbank then it pays to take a stick and tap the rocks as you walk.  Snakes feel the vibrations and that alerts them to visitors. They will then lie low until you pass. When the guide I was was was attacked we were walking in silence and he wasn’t tapping a stick.

If you want to prepare for your holiday, or have a go at identifying the snakes in this video, then there’s very good free ebook available at http://www.thailandsnakes.com/ebook/  Download it, print it out and see how many you can spot on your next holiday.

 

1 Comment

  • “They’re lurking everywhere but you probably won’t see unless you know where to look.”

    I’m not sure. Driving a motorbike from one end of the road to the other, so about 50km, I reckon I average about 1 snake crossing the road in front of me, assuming no rain (snakes don’t like rain much). Most people who rent a bike probably cover a bit more than that on a Koh Chang holiday. The east coast road, the Klong Son road, and the area around Bang Bao are more likely to encounter snakes, so if you stuck to those areas you could probably average 2 or more every 50km. Also driving at dusk is much more productive for finding snakes as that’s when they move about most.

    A full day jungle trek with a guide will generally yield a snake or two.

    I suppose most tourists stay around their hotel in the built-up areas and only transit to and from the beach by foot, and anywhere further afield they will go in the back of a taxi, so they won’t see any snakes. But independent travellers and travellers venturing into the jungle, should be able to see a snake over the course of a typical 3-4 day stay on Koh Chang.

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