Let’s talk about snakes

They have a bad reputation, unfair and undeserved and in addition to them stories are told excessively extravagant, because with two fingers of front immediately you understand that they are not possible. Perhaps the strangest story that is told about snakes is that they like milk! Therefore, according to some say, do not hesitate to climb the udder of the cows, or even, bad and perverse as they are, hatch tricks to take milk from newborns in the very lap of his mother, when she is asleep, and to prevent the child from crying they put their tail in the infant’s mouth … and there are those who assure that this is true.

It is bad luck to instill fear, when we are much more harmful to them.

Of the 13 species that inhabit our peninsula, only 3 are poisonous. The known as vipers, are solenoglyph snakes, that means they have poison and specialized teeth to inoculate it. However, neither the seoane viper (typical of the Cantabrian Mountains), nor the asp (Pyrenees) nor the snout (Mediterranean and of greater distribution) have the slightest interest in using their weapons against us, because that poison helps them feed, mainly of rodents and other small mammals, in addition vipers are very scarce and if we do not want to have problems with them, it will usually be enough to leave them alone.

Culebra de cogulla

Of the other 10, only two present some venom, but they do not have specialized teeth to inject it, they are the bastard snake and the cogulla (the latter is so small that there is nothing of us that can fit in the mouth).

The most abundant ophidians in the olive grove are the cogulla snake and the horseshoe snake. The presence of the latter in the agricultural media is very beneficial, because they will help us control rodent populations, (the head of the cow is the smallest of our snakes and its diet is based on other small reptiles such as blind shingles. , his favorite prey).

Horseshoe snake on a bully picking olives

These weeks have been several occasions in which we have run into them. Our friends from Oleaí even shared a harvest day with a horseshoe snake that wandered through their shawls.

They deserve our respect!

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