It’s mating season for green mambas and when caught in the act – it can be a fascinating sight to watch. Nick Evans- Snake Rescuer described it as one of the most special snake sightings he has ever seen – when he stumbled across two green mambas mating in the wild.
Evans is a well-known conservationist who lives in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. He responds to calls to remove dangerous snakes from homes and precarious situations – and he relocates them to safer areas with less human contact.
While out looking for pythons on the north coast, as one does on a Saturday, Evans and his friends Richard and Candice Mckibbin made one last stop next to a forest edge where mambas are known to frequent.
“Richard said he wanted to walk up the road a bit and check. I opted to stay behind, checking my phone. I had this funny feeling, and I thought, ‘I bet he’s going to find it, while I sit back’,” said Evans. And sure enough he stumbled on two green mambas who weren’t immediately mating, but moved slowly into position to begin.
“Their tails intertwined, and they were locked, mating. It was fascinating to watch. After a while, they moved higher up into the canopy, and we eventually left. I was kicking myself for leaving my camera behind, but luckily my cellphone takes half-decent pics when zoomed in. But just to be able to watch this rarely seen behaviour made me forget about my frustration,” said Evans.
When he went back to see them the following day they were there, relaxing a metre apart from each other.
According to Evans, there’s a chance they have been together a few days and in about 3 months time, that female mamba is going to find a place to lay her eggs, and then she’ll leave them, not offering them any protection.
When they hatch, they will go their own way – some might get eaten along the way by birds or other small animals.
“If they all survived, we’d have an overpopulation. And with Greens Mambas, that is definitely not an issue at the moment.These snakes are CONSTANTLY losing habitat. They generally only occur on the coast, in coastal forests. Such areas are constantly undergoing development.Something I recently learnt, for interests sake,” he said.
Another interesting tidbit is that that female snakes mate with more than one male – and her eggs could belong to more than one male.
Green mamba venom is among the most rapid-acting venom of snakes. The snake is, however, is very shy and death from this species is rare because they stay away from humans. Bites are extremely dangerous and will kill you.
To listen to his latest podcast about the exciting mamba rescue click here.