A spy...

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infidel
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A spy...

Post by infidel » September 23rd, 2011, 12:47 pm

Today while walking through the south Texas brush, I kept hearing a faint noise a few yards from me. So I stood completely still and looked for a few minutes and saw a spy checking out my every move.
Image
I truly beleive that coachwhips are the "thinking-est" snakes in N. America. I've seen so many indications of true thought over the years, some times, they just surprise me.

John Williams
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Re: A spy...

Post by John Williams » September 23rd, 2011, 12:58 pm

Nice shot JP. I'd have to agree with you, and maybe throw schotti in there as well. It's amazing that they will strike specifically for your eyes and face when given the chance. I'd imagine they would have to use some sort of thought process to decipher where the eyes of their attacker are.

John

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Daryl Eby
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Re: A spy...

Post by Daryl Eby » September 23rd, 2011, 1:09 pm

Nice shot Mr. Centavos!
John Williams wrote:It's amazing that they will strike specifically for your eyes and face when given the chance. I'd imagine they would have to use some sort of thought process to decipher where the eyes of their attacker are.
Facial recognition software. :shock:

It's almost funny watching people pick up their first coachwhip. After the first one, you learn to NEVER let them near your face.

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pete
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Re: A spy...

Post by pete » September 23rd, 2011, 1:10 pm

What a great shot that is!!! WOW

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cayrip
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Re: A spy...

Post by cayrip » September 23rd, 2011, 1:47 pm

Very cool! The photo really expresses intelligence in that snake and I believe it too.

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infidel
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Re: A spy...

Post by infidel » September 23rd, 2011, 2:02 pm

I moved a little closer as he kept watching. He barely moved. I guess he was hoping I didn't see him :)
Image
JP

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ChrisNM
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Re: A spy...

Post by ChrisNM » September 23rd, 2011, 2:10 pm

I really like the DOF, from the OOF in foreground to the OOF background, on that first shot Jason!

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Daryl Eby
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Re: A spy...

Post by Daryl Eby » September 23rd, 2011, 2:24 pm

infidel wrote:I moved a little closer as he kept watching. He barely moved. I guess he was hoping I didn't see him :)
He was probably wondering if you were going to put a flower in his mouth.

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Andrew G
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Re: A spy...

Post by Andrew G » September 23rd, 2011, 5:35 pm

I see both inquisitiveness and intelligence in that snake. Cool pictures!

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vincemartino
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Re: A spy...

Post by vincemartino » September 23rd, 2011, 7:25 pm

Reminds me of the road runner from the cartoons I used to watch. Roadrunner would give the ol' Wile E. coyote this blank stare, then Coyote would fall straight through an acme hole in the ground plummeting to his non-death.

I'm just saying watch out for death traps and sudden manholes out in that bush, because it looks like the Coachwhips are out to get you.

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Carl Brune
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Re: A spy...

Post by Carl Brune » September 23rd, 2011, 7:49 pm

Sweet pics.

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Mark Brown
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Re: A spy...

Post by Mark Brown » September 24th, 2011, 2:47 am

infidel wrote:I truly beleive that coachwhips are the "thinking-est" snakes in N. America. I've seen so many indications of true thought over the years, some times, they just surprise me.
I've always had the same feeling about the racer/coachwhips in general. I think it's the eyes - and didn't Kauffeld allude to this in Snakes and Snake Hunting? Have to dig it out and reread the chapter on those animals. They just seem to have an "intelligent" look to their eyes, at least to me, in the same way that cobras and mambas do. I wonder if anyone has done behavioral studies to determine intelligence or the ability to learn in snakes in general - I'm sure someone has. Cobras' and mambas' ability to quickly learn has been pretty well documented and is obvious to anyone who's worked with them in captivity.

In 45+ years of herping, I've seen someone "attacked" by a snake exactly one time, though to call it an attack would be to somewhat stretch the meaning of the term. A group of us flipped a large Western Coachwhip near Austin a few years ago. We observed it for a few minutes and then moved on, but every time one of us got near its hiding spot, it would rush at us, head held high in the air. It was quite amusing and one couldn't help thinking that a layperson would be terrified to see this behavior. Of course, a layperson wouldn't have disturbed it in the first place, but it caused me to stop telling people that "snakes never attack people".

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Ted
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Re: A spy...

Post by Ted » September 24th, 2011, 9:16 am

Awesome pics! I may have had very little experience of the field as yet, but I think that all animals, not just racers/coachwhips, are more intelligent than we give them credit for. That's why I love working with animals so much. (maybe jellyfish could be the exception, seeing as they don't have brains)

mikemike
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Re: A spy...

Post by mikemike » September 24th, 2011, 11:07 am

Awesome pics and observations, Jason. I too am a firm believe in their ability to think and "know what's going on."

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Don Becker
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Re: A spy...

Post by Don Becker » September 24th, 2011, 11:55 am

I have a little coachwhip here. It's always poking it's head out and watching me as I move around the snake room. It's a very curious snake for sure.

SnakeMan123
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Re: A spy...

Post by SnakeMan123 » September 24th, 2011, 7:26 pm

I love it when herps stay so still like that relying on their camo to make them just dissapear, really results in the ability to get some amazing shots like the ones you got here. Awesome!

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Mark Brown
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Re: A spy...

Post by Mark Brown » September 25th, 2011, 12:27 am

SnakeMan123 wrote:I love it when herps stay so still like that relying on their camo to make them just dissapear, really results in the ability to get some amazing shots like the ones you got here. Awesome!
I see that every day at work - there's a healthy population of Sceloporus (Texas Spiny Lizards) in the oak trees just behind the office building, and they'll stay motionless on their tree and let you get within inches, as long as you don't look directly at them as you approach. More than one time I've been out there and not realized that there was an 8-inch long lizard within a foot of me until it chose to move. I keep thinking I should take my camera one day and get some photos.

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