Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘snake

A green not seen

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There have been several times when I’ve walked close to a snake I didn’t see, including a rattlesnake in Palo Duro Canyon a couple of decades ago. The latest walk-by occurred on December 7th in Roy G. Guerrero Colorado River Metro Park. The Lady Eve, walking behind me on the path, caught sight of a slender green snake maybe a foot long that I’d passed, and she called my attention to it. That’s why you’re getting to look at this portrait of what seems to have been a rough green snake, Opheodrys aestivus.

Our word serpent goes back to the Latin verb serpere, which meant ‘to creep, to crawl.’ Similarly, reptile traces back to the Latin verb repere, which meant the same thing. In contrast, our word snake is native English, with the modern form having developed from Anglo-Saxon snaca. According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, the figurative sense of snake as ‘a treacherous person’ was first recorded in the 1580s. Treacherous people have been around for a whole lot longer than that.

© 2020 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 12, 2020 at 4:36 AM

Posted in nature photography

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A striking snake, or one that might become so

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At the Agate Fossil Beds National Monument in Nebraska on May 29th Eve heard a sound and then saw, menacingly close, a rattlesnake at the edge of the path we were walking on. After taking pictures of it, including this one that clearly shows the upraised rattle, I phoned the visitor center and had the staff warn people who were headed out along the same path.

From what I can tell after reading Venomous Snakes and Snakebite in Nebraska, this appears to have been a prairie rattlesnake, Crotalus viridis.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 14, 2017 at 5:02 AM

Intrepid me

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Rattlesnake 0477A

Intrepid me, following a rattlesnake (Crotalus spp.) at the Doeskin Ranch in Burnet County on April 8. After I lived up to my reputation as a photographer by starting to take pictures, the snake lived up to its name by starting to rattle. Soon it moved off into the brush where I couldn’t take any more photographs of it, so the brief encounter ended in a draw: the rattlesnake didn’t bite me and I didn’t bite it.

© 2016 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 28, 2016 at 5:01 AM

Ribbon snake

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Ribbon Snake 7443

During a field trip to the Shield Ranch on October 18th I photographed this ribbon snake (seemingly Thamnophis proximus rubrilineatus). In case you’re wondering, this slender snake did let me get as close with my 100mm macro lens as it looks like I was, perhaps because I lay on the ground and therefore didn’t seem too threatening. That seems like a good assumption, because as soon as I stood back up to try to get a better view of the colorful ribbon on the top of the snake, it slithered away.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

October 31, 2015 at 5:08 AM

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