Zamenis longissimus in Hessen, Germany

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Zamenis longissimus in Hessen, Germany

Postby Christoph Stenger » Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:40 pm

Hi folks,

last week I decided to go to the south of Hessen and try to find some Zamenis longissimus, a species and location that I hadn’t visited for some years now.

Then today I stuffed my kids and my camera in the car and arrived at the location at around 1030. For about an hour we kept looking for snakes but found ‚hundreds‘ of Anguis fragilis. I have never seen them in such masses. It was good to see that the habitat obviously is being taken care of and monitored - makes me hope that the population is big and strong and thus will survive and even expand.

We then changed locations and were successful within minutes to discover the first Zamenis - out in the low vegetation and not hidden underneath tarps or sheets of steel. That was a first time for me - never seen them crawling around. At first I thought it was a black rubber tube for bicycles but then it startet to move...

All in all I saw 2,3,1. The juvenile seems to be born last year - please excuse the in hand picture of it. If it’s not ok, I will remove it immediately. The little one was impossible to photograph on the ground.

Pictures to follow in a few minutes.
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Christoph Stenger
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:11 pm
Location: Hanau
Hometown: Hanau
country: Deutschland

Re: Zamenis longissimus in Hessen, Germany

Postby Patrick Masius » Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:57 am

Dear Christoph,
cool Zamenis report. Thanks for sharing. The little ones are most pretty! And good to know that the population is still healthy.
Many years ago, I found a 180 cm Zamenis catching baby mice in the very western part of the Taunus (Hesse). That was quite something...
Best wishes
Patrick Masius
Posts: 23
Joined: Thu Sep 21, 2017 8:56 am
Hometown: Goettingen
country: Germany

Re: Zamenis longissimus in Hessen, Germany

Postby Michal Szkudlarek » Sun Apr 22, 2018 10:20 am

We have this species in Poland too but only in extreme south-east and it is said to be rare.
User avatar
Michal Szkudlarek
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Joined: Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:09 pm
Location: Poland
Hometown: ...
country: Poland

Re: Zamenis longissimus in Hessen, Germany

Postby Christoph Stenger » Sun Apr 22, 2018 10:27 am

Hi Patrick,

thank you!

To the Taunus population I only went once - in pouring rain and 10 degrees C. Luckily our official guide had caught a big Zamenis ahead of the presentation. But we had found 4 Coronella (if I remember correctly) right next to the road. That Taunus habitat is quite similar to the more southern one.

The males I found yesterday measured about 150cm, the females were much smaller.

And yes, the little one is pretty - looks like it will develop the ‚lineatus‘ pattern in the future.

It is interesting that the last time I went there about half the Zamenis displayed the lineatus pattern as opposed to yesterday when all adults were of the regular Longissimus pattern.

Nice snakes anyway - and really angry ones too...

Christoph Stenger
Posts: 90
Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:11 pm
Location: Hanau
Hometown: Hanau
country: Deutschland

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