Lizards and Snakes in the Garden
Often unseen Gardeners friends, but they're always there...somewhere!
You see I have had to use someone else's photo's for the Snakes. This is simply the fact that when you look for them, you never find them and they have a habit of suddenly jumping out from under a piece of wood when you're least expecting !!
The UK's only venomous Snake is quite common in grassy areas such as that bit you haven't cut for a while or the pile of grass cuttings.
They are quite small in size, the male only growing to about 60cms long. To spot one, or any snake, leave a sheet of corrugated iron or some old wood down on fairly short grass and on a sunny day look underneath.
The Grass Snake
The Grass Snake can be found almost anywhere in the Garden but likes a good lawn cutting pile or compost heap. I once picked up some cuttings and to my surprise one jumped out straight onto my neck, fell to the ground and away! As I said, they are there when you least expect them!
A wonderful sight is to see them crossing a Stream or Pond, they also like water and being near it.
Grass Snakes hibernate through winter, usually in rotting vegetation, so a Compost Heap is ideal breeding and hibernating ground.
I love these little creatures, the photograph was me picking one out of a large tub, he refused to budge but gladly climbed on to my hand.
I find them under bits of Wood I have in the Vegetable Patch, they live in a slight bank with long grass and nettles growing on it.
They can be found almost anywhere; grassland, woodland, usually where they have quick access to the open for basking in the sun.
The Slow Worm
Contrary to some belief, the Slow Worm is actually a Lizard and not a Snake or 'large worm'. As all the others though, they enjoy a good compost heap to live in and will slowly prowl around for any invertibrates.
I've seen one in my Chicken Run, but when I did, it was too late, they have many Predators including Cats.