Queensland Pest Control
May 14, 2020
I vividly remember my first snake encounter, and frankly the experience wasn’t at all what I had imagined it to be.
It’s funny how as kiwis we adopt a natural fear of all of Aussie’s dangerous species. But honestly, snakes were something I didn’t give much thought to when I first started working in outback Australia. There were other things to think about, like not dying of heat stroke or dust inhalation or being bucked off your horse. Of course I was aware of them, but I definitely adopted the Australian attitude towards them; you acknowledge that they’re out there but until you come across one, why stress? Same old valuable life lesson isn’t it, don’t worry about something you can’t control, or that hasn’t happened yet.
We were cleaning out the mineral/feed shed one afternoon, sweeping out a years-worth of dust, dead mice and birds mostly. I was in the middle of dragging a heavy wheelie bin that was full of mineral when one of the guys complained (mockingly); “Oh Hannaaaah! You killed it!”
I spun around and said “killed what?!” just as he picked up the remains of a long brown carpet python. Turns out it was happily curled up underneath the wheelie bin until I had dragged it backwards and over the top of the snake, cutting it in half.
In typical kiwi fashion, without even being aware of it, I had single handedly killed my first Australian snake. And frankly, the whole experience wasn’t even that exciting! I didn’t get to wrangle anything or jump around and have my Steve Irwin moment!
Carpet pythons are harmless and are actually encouraged in feed and chem sheds as they kill the mice, so the joke of the week quickly became that ‘the kiwi’ had killed the stations pest control.
Ironically that same afternoon I had to hit the road for an event over the weekend. As I was heading down the driveway, dust flying and tunes blearing, my eye caught a long dark body making its way across the road. Twice in the same day I had safety (and rather uneventfully) encountered my first two snakes; killing one, and almost running over the other!
My snake experiences didn’t stay boring for long. I finally got a true thrilling experience a few months later when I found a baby brown inside my bedroom. I had no idea how long it had been there and my workmates managed to convince me that snakes like to breed and live in bed bases …. Needless to say I didn’t sleep for the next week!