This odd shape caught my eye as I worked my way down the boardwalk at Francis Beidler Forrest.
Possibly a Rat Snake, he was in a tidy pile and undisturbed by my presence. It wasn’t until processing these images I noticed the insect exuvia, seen in this next image if you zoom in, just to the right of the snake’s head.
I passed by a little later and the snake had stretched his neck out along the branch, and you can see the exuvia dangling above the snake about 3/4 across the image from the left edge.
His tail had flipped around to the other side, but the rest of his body stayed in the same looped configuration.
Audubon Center at Beidler Forest, Harleyville, SC
April 14, 2023
Differences in pattern or color from the background are often the best way to spot creatures in the wild. This snake caught my eye due to both of those factors, plus he was moving!
I’m not a big snake fan, but I was fascinated by the shapes this one took as he moved down the tree trunk and that he could hang onto the tree. He was intertwined when I first saw him. I thought he was eating something but it turns out his head was directly over his tail.
Slowly he worked his way towards the ground, straightening out, his body taking an indirect route.
Then he made a few 90 degree turns. I got distracted by the Reddish Egret in the water beyond this tree line and when I looked back he was gone. I promptly went the other way.
One of the photographers I was traveling with identified this as a Brown Snake, and harmless to humans. I’ll take her word for it. He was brown so I’m not looking it up — too many pictures when you Google snake.
Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, Florida, 1/28/2018