Journal

Wagler’s Pit Viper spotted!

on
14 November 2010
I was trudging up to Wallace Trail at the Dairy Farm Park when I noticed an odd colouration in the bushes. It looked like a super long caterpillar (who am I kidding!!?) and on closer look, it was a baby snake resting on the leaves!

The juvenile Wagler’s Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) has a broad triangular shaped head, and is highly venomous. It’s venom is a strong Hemotoxin, which destroys red blood cells, disrupts blood clotting, and causes organ/tissue damage. This, may lead to loss of a limb, so just play safe, don’t disturb any snakes, and watch where you step!

While I was shooting the viper, Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports – Dr Vivian Balakrishnan – appeared behind me with a group of Cashew residents and asked what I was shooting. I whispered “snake!!!”, much to the horror of some of the aunties and uncles. ūüėõ

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8808#1 Little Pit Viper spotted! The juvenile looks very different from an adult, which would be black with yellow stripes and grows up to 1 meter in length.

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8815#2 Closer look at the triangular head

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8820#3 Front view. It is called a Pit Viper for it’s heat-sensing “pits” on it’s cheeks, in between the eye and nostrils visible in this shot. These are used to locate prey, detecting temperature differences of as little as 0.003 degree Celsius!

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8825#4 Started hissing as many passer-bys stopped and created a commotion behind me -.-“”

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8831#5 Curling up on a branch

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8833#6 Flapping it’s tongue.. *bleh* *bleh* *bleh* *bleh* *bleh*

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8850#7 Closing in to it’s head

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8857#8 Another view from the top

Wagler's Pit Viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri) - DSC_8860#9 Final shot from the front

Moths - DSC_8892#10 A very cute pair of moths hiding behind a leaf

Darkling Beetle (Tenebrionidae) - DSC_8973#11 Front view of a beetle. Had shot this on numerous occasions but never from the front. Looks fierce!!

Beetles - DSC_8990#12 Another cute pair hiding in a tree trunk crevice

Planthopper (Fulgoromorpha) - DSC_9046#13 A colourful plant hopper. I thought it was a lantern bug… chey

Ant-Snatching Assassin Bug (Acanthaspis sp.) - DSC_9074#14 Ant-snatching assassin bug (Acanthaspis petax). It stabs it’s prey and discards the carcasses on it’s back. It secretes fine sticky threads on it’s back so that the corpses would stick as it carrys it’s armor of dead bodies around!

Ant-Snatching Assassin Bug (Acanthaspis sp.) - DSC_9077#15 Another view of the ant-snatcher!

Crab Spider (Thomisidae) - DSC_9089#16 A very rare view of a male and female crab spider couple together, and BOTH having a prey in their jaws

Robberfly (Asilidae) - DSC_9104#17 Robberfly with a bee for lunch

The complete album can be viewed here.
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NICKY BAY
Singapore

Hi my name is Nicky Bay. I am a macro photographer, instructor and book author, travelling the world to document the vast micro biodiversity that nature has to offer. Follow my updates and discover with me the incredible beauty and science behind our planet's micro creatures!

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