November 2015

Lucky Snuggles!

We brought our bird cage in from the veranda last night to put Snuggles, our Cockatiel, to bed and found this snake inside it. We were very surprised to find it was already occupied!

We thought it might be a Coastal Taipan!

Answer

The snake in your photo is a Brown Tree Snake, Boiga irregularis. Other common names for this species are Night Tiger and Dolls Eye Snake.

Coastal Taipans are not such agile climbers, usually active during the day, and feed almost exclusively on mammals.

Brown tree snakes, on the other hand, are very fond of birds and their eggs. Many bird owners have not been as lucky as you. Usually they find the bird has disappeared and been replaced by a snake with a very full belly trapped inside the cage. One bird owner told us of a snake that ate five of her budgies!

Brown tree snakes are excellent climbers and active nocturnal hunters. They locate their prey by scent and can easily squeeze through the bars of most bird cages. Bird owners should be very careful that cages are well out of reach of these agile snakes!

For more information about Brown Tree Snakes and Coastal Taipans visit the links below.

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