Snake dines on lorikeet

Once devoured, it may take between five to eight days for the snake to digest the bird.
Once devoured, it may take between five to eight days for the snake to digest the bird. Aileen and Graham Wilson

SNAKES are on the move and are hungry.

In an awesome spectacle of natural predation, these images were captured over a two-hour period at Richmond Street, Lawrence, this week by Aileen and Graham Wilson.

Often the first indication of a snake close by is noisy birdlife.

Aileen first noticed the coastal carpet python stealthily coiled around the gutter when she heard the ruckus of the bird that would soon be paralysed by its grip.

Like a mythological beast, half bird, half snake, the rainbow lorikeet was still fluttering its colourful spray before falling silent.

“It was a bit hard to watch but there was nothing we could do and we had to let nature take its course,” Graham said.

Over the two hours, the couple watched and photographed the slow methodical devouring of the helpless bird.

Nothing could awake the reptile from its stupor while it feasted, not even a pesky kookaburra that decided the snake was prime pickings.

“Once it was committed to the kill it became vulnerable and not even the swooping kookaburra could wake it,” Graham said.

“He didn't move an inch,” Graham said.

Once fully swallowed, the gluttonous snake could hardly lift its head to retreat to the safety of the roof, where it had probably laid dormant for the winter.


These series of photographs by Aileen and Graham show the snake eating the lorikeet over a two hour period.

“They are harmless creatures and you need to expect them living near the everlasting swamp like we do,” Graham said.

“He'll go back to the roof and help keep the vermin down.”

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