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Grass snake spotted next to the estuary

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Grass snake spotted emerging from estuary

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A grass snake was spotted emerging from the Kingsbridge estuary in a rare wildlife sighting. 

Chris Doust spotted the snake on Tuesday evening, at the head of the Kingsbridge Estuary (going to get ahead of the comments - yes, I know it's technically a Ria!) as it emerged from the foliage at the top of the wall. 

Grass snake - Chris Doust

Grass snakes tend to be between 90-150cm and can live for 15-25 years. They are completely harmless. 

According to the Wildlife Trust, grass snakes are the UK's largest snake, is particularly fond of wetland habitats, but can also be found in dry grasslands and in gardens, especially those with a pond nearby.

During the summer, grass snake can be spotted basking in the sun near their favourite ponds or swimming in the water.

Although it seems that although they like freshwater, there have been many sightings of them near or in saltwater, so it could have come straight from the estuary itself! 

They hunt amphibians, fish, small mammals and birds. Females lay 10 to 40 eggs in rotting vegetation, such as compost heaps, incubating them until they hatch in early Autumn. Like all reptiles, grass snake hibernate, usually from October to April.

You can identify a grass snake because they are usually greenish in colour, with a yellow and black collar, pale belly, and dark markings down the sides. Females are bigger than males.

Thank you so much to Chris for sharing these pictures - we're very jealous! 

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