Monday, 3 May 2021

Bulgaria Day Four to Eight, Herping Trip

Back from an epic four day herping trip with Dylan, Anton and Sagar. 24 species of snakes, lizards, geckos, slow worms, frogs, Tortoises and toads; Hermann's and Spur-thighed Tortoise, Balkan Green and Eastern Green Lizard, Glass Lizard, Sand Lizard,  European Wall Lizard, Eastern Slow Worm, Kotchy's gecko, Yellow-bellied Toad, Common Toad, Green Toad, Agile Frog, Marsh Frog, Tree Frog (heard),  Aesculapian Snake, Caspian Whip Snake, Four-lined Snake, Horn-nosed Viper, Eastern Montpellier Snake, Worm Snake,  Dice Snake and Southern Crested Newt. 

Four-lined Snake, Norn-nosed Viper, Eastern Montepllier Snake and Southern Crested Newts were lifers so a very successful trip. A great adventure (not without it's dangers!). 

Four-lined Snake 
Horn-nosed Viper . We had six of these including fighting males, a female (browner than males)  and young specimens. 
Eastern Montpellier Snake (above and below)  

Caspain Whip-snake. Six of these including adults (above) and young (below). 
Caspian (left) and Aesculapian Snake (juveniles) . 
Aesculapian Snake . In addition to this adult we also had a juvenile (above) . 
Eastern Grass Snake . Three of these. 
Worm Snake- only one of these at night while unsuccessfully hunting for Cat Snake and Leopard Snake  
Eastern Green Lizard 
Balkan Green Lizard
Common Wall Lizard 
Spur-thighed Tortoise 
Hermann's Tortoise 
Yellow-bellied Toad 
Common Toad 
Female Southern Crested Newt 
Eastern Slow Worm 
Kotschy's Gecko
Sand Lizard 
European Scorpion 
Hospitalisation following a bite from Horn-nosed Viper for one of our team- the most dangerous snake in Europe. Within an hour of the bite we were at the hospital and symptoms had developed into swelling of the wound, arm and a rash and the beginning of neurotoxins affecting speech and dizziness and fatigue.  With the necessary treatment all was good with discharge from hospital within three days. The key to Viper bite survival (un-treated bites can be fatal)  is keeping calm and swiftly getting to hospital for treatment (often involving anti-venom, antihistamines, pain killers, electrolytes and if necrosis develops for necessary surgery).   
Herping hunting landscapes

A few videos below Four-lined Snake (1-2), Horn-nosed Viper (3) and Eastern Montpellier Snake (4) 

Herp vids

Posted by Peter Alfrey on Monday, May 3, 2021

Tik tok videos (Great to see the lads getting tens of thousands of views on this platform- public engagement at a different league! albeit populist style) :

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