Sunday, October 14, 2012
Natrix natrix...but we just call it a Grass Snake
Anyways, that is looking at the hard work of it. The fun side is just saying to myself that this Snake I came across on Cuckmere Haven last weekend, absolutely made my day! I spent the weekend in Eastbourne on a sort of break after my wedding (I don't want to say honeymoon, as that probably won't be for a few months yet), and Cuckmere Haven was the last place I wanted to visit, as I knew it is a favourite location of one of my favourite photographers, Charlie Waite. It's a fantastic landscape to capture, but the last thing I expected to see was a Grass Snake! I was coming down the hill towards the river when this Snake, slithered (I almost wrote sprinted then) out in front of me at speed. Now I have seen Grass Snakes out and about before, but again the moment is normally as fleeting as the speed at which it takes the Snake to find cover in the nearest bush or undergrowth. However, true to it's name, there is nothing but short grass on the hill surrounding Cuckmere haven at this time of year. So I was able to chase it down the hill for a long time, whilst stopping occasionally, to try and get as close to the snake as possible, whilst firing off many pictures.
One thing you have to know about Grass Snakes, is that despite being the largest Snake in the British Isles (we only have 3!), it really is not that big. I've been looking at other pictures of grass snake on the net since, and though there are indeed some great pictures, with interesting surroundings, nearly all of them are cropped below 1000pixels across. I have cropped this picture, but still to just above 3000pixels, because although I could crop in closer and still keep the detail, I wanted to get as much of the snake in the shot as possible. Who knows though, maybe I will put a closer shot in another day. Wildlife photography remains a keen interest of mine, but I know that until I can afford all of that 'glass', I'll still have fun capturing these little opportunities that present themselves.