October 2013

Snake eggs

Could you please tell me if these are taipan eggs? They were accidentally dug up from the back of my property. I did try to put them back but realise that probably wouldn’t have been successful. I have had taipans here on other occasions even though a local snake catcher refuses to believe they are in this area – Coominya just south of Esk.

Answer

It is difficult to know if your relocation efforts will be successful but I can offer a few pointers for the successful relocation of reptile eggs. Unlike birds, the yolk of reptile eggs is poorly supported within the egg and any rolling or turning can cause fatal damage to the developing embryo. Position of the eggs is fairly important. Although female snakes often lay their eggs underground, they rarely bury their eggs. The eggs are usually laid within some sort of cavity or chamber with some form of air space. Your eggs were probably in an old mouse or rat burrow or in the cavity left by a rotted tree stump or root. It can be difficult to recreate this kind of environment.

I agree with you, Taipans could certainly be in the Coominya area. In your landscape they favour creek or gully lines with Lantana thicket.

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