NASHIK: Vine Snake is a beautiful creation of nature. The only snake species with horizontal pupils gets attention of everyone due to its slender body structure. The commonly found Snake in Igatpuri tehsil of the district has become uncommon. The snake expert have said that this snake species has become rarely sighted. So, how this snake species is getting outside? Snake Expert, Manish Godbole, explained about the snake species with Deshdoot Times.
He talked about the reasons behind decrease in population of the snake species. Specifically on habitat loss, human interference and misconception of the Vine Snake. Godbole explained that the Vine Snake species is semi venomous snake species. The venome in this snake species is non fatal to humans. The snake bite of this species does not affect humans in any manner.They normally feed on frogs and lizards using their binocular vision to hunt.
They are slow moving, relying on camouflaging themselves as vines in foliage. They expand their bodies when disturbed to show a black and white scale marking. Also, they may open their mouths in a threat display and point their heads in the direction of the perceived threat. They are the only species of snake with horizontal pupils, compared to the normal vertical slit pupils found in many species of viper.
This Snake Species is basically getting rarely sighted due to habitat loss. The bushes small trees are cut down in name of development which is majorly affecting this snake species. The prey on which the Vine Snake feed are also disappearing as they share the same habitat. There is need of awareness about the species to save it from extinction from the district.
Reasons of decreasing numbers
Misconception: This snake species has also a known as eye plucker due to misconception which has sticked with them. There is a misconception that these snake strikes on eyes and middle of forehead, due to which human dies immediately. Godbole has said that this is nonsense belief of people and is threatening the species as people try to kill them as soon as they see this snake
Habitat Loss: Due to urbanization and growing development works the habitat of this snake is shrinking. They naturally live on Bushes especially a Phangala species found commonly in Igatpuri, Trimbakeshwar tehsils. As any hunting species they share habitat with their prey. As their preys are getting out numbered the snake specie is suffering too.
Human intervention: Human interaction in their already shrinking habitat is also a major reason behind the decreasing number of Vine Snake. The increasing trekking and enthusiastic snake handling is adding on to loss of this snake species. Due to its slender body and motion people often try to pet this snake species which is also threatening Vine Snake.