A four-feet long rat snake sneaked into the fountain at Rahul Dravid’s house at Mahadevapura on Tuesday. The cricketer, who was with his family at his home, immediately called the BBMP’s wildlife cell who rushed to the spot and netted the reptile. While the tryst with the snake was an unusual experience for Dravid, Bangalore, replete with flora, has been home to different kinds of reptiles, including snakes. While the rat snake is a non-venomous reptile, the city has witnessed several incidents of even the deadly cobra visiting the residential domains of citizens.
Recently, residents at Krishna Math Complex in densely populated Malleswarm were shocked to find a fully-grown cobra in their compound. When the herpetologist was summoned and the snake catchers cornered the golden-yellow cobra, it was estimated that the reptile had cohabited with the citizens there for at least two years without anyone being harmed.
The only signs of a presence of the cobra was the regular discoveries of half-eaten rats and bandicoots in the driveway, which the residents dismissed as the deeds of hungry cats in the vicinity. Two months ago, a rat snake entered the house of actress Bhumika Chawla who is Dravid’s neighbour.
According to experts, the increased presence of reptiles in residential areas points to how animals, including reptiles, have learned to live close to human habitats. With new layouts getting formed, government bodies are encroaching animals’ territory, forcing them to enter areas where humans reside.
“Rat snakes are highly adaptable. With new layouts being formed, we are encroaching their home. We throw garbage around which attracts rats. Rat snakes nibble on garbage and hence they live close to human habitats,” said Siddharth Rao, director, Agumbe Rainforest Research Station (ARRS). With plenty of food available, snakes are bound to find a home near you. “Presence of snakes in the city is not a new phenomenon. Rats are found where there is garbage and snakes are found where rats reside,” said Gowri Shankar, a city based herpetologist. firstname.lastname@example.org