Friday, February 09, 2007
Are these the sea snakes in Survivor 14?
In Fiji there are sea snakes or sea kraits and I have only seen them twice:
once several were sunning themselves on rocks in a quiet location in Vorovoro Island, and the day our family visited Nukutatava Beach after resolving a land dispute that gave us back access to our tribal land, and two were curled around fallen coconut trunks in the shallows. Peceli said this was a sure sign of approval of our winning our land back.
A Hacking Family website that includes descriptions of this kind of sea snake also has descriptions of other Fiji creatures such as the iguana.
They write as follows:
Air-breathing sea snakes are common in Tonga and Fiji. The Banded Sea Krait has a distinctive black head and black and white bands and flat tail (adapted for swimming). It's often seen on the reefs, but can also be found along the coasts, on the rocky shores. The sea snake photographed here has a yellow and black head, and is also called a sea krait, but I don't know its species. Most sea snakes come ashore in freshwater inlets and give birth to live young on land. Although these snakes have a toxin many times more deadly than any land snakes they are very docile in the sea (some divers handle them, but not us!) and their mouths are so small they cannot get purchase on anything much bigger than a small finger. They also only eject venom when feeding or under great duress. We have had one slither up into our dinghy and we used the boat hook to fling it out, not wanting to find out the extent of the creature’s definition of “great duress”! A week later Sue was standing on the sugar-scoop working on the dinghy and felt something gently rubbing her foot. Freak out! It was on the deck, under the ladder! The flash picture scared it back into the water!