Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Day 371: Friendly fish and stripy snakes

After a late-ish breakfast at the café, we headed out on today's walk, taking the boardwalk through the mangroves (where it was low tide and the mud was crawling with hundreds of brightly coloured fiddler crabs, waving their single oversized claw at each other) then following the loop trail back the way we had come in yesterday afternoon before taking a side trail off to the left. Before we started the climb we passed through a boggy area where a group of frogs was calling excitedly. 

The trail took us through the same mix of vegetation as yesterday – a bit of rainforest, a bit of heathland – before we arrived at our destination: a builders-tea-coloured creek with a few deep pools in it and a few small waterfalls up- and downstream. We quickly stripped off and jumped into the cool water; the main pool was quite deep – at least a metre and a half – and was alive with some interesting-looking fish. 

Suitably refreshed, we climbed out and made and ate some lunch. Not long after, we were joined by two young Italian couples were returning from the end of the trail we had followed to get to the swimming area. They agreed with our decision not to continue on to the end – the tide was out a long way, the haze killed any views and the walk back up from the beach was pretty arduous. So instead, we just hung around by the creek and swam some more, chatting to the Italians.

By mid-afternoon we were ready to head back, hitting the shower as soon as we made it to the room. Sarah went out to give some apple cores to a bearded pig that was hanging around and was soon calling out that she had seen a snake. I ran out to see, but it had already disappeared into the undergrowth. On my way back to the room I spotted some movement that turned out to be another snake – a long, thin, striped colubrid. I quickly grabbed it by the tail, but when I picked it up, it thrashed around a little alarmingly, so I released it and watched it, too, disappear into the undergrowth. We all sat down on some seats on the walkway outside the room and the pigs came over to see us. One of them started chasing something in the grass and sure enough, it was another of the striped snakes. This time I managed to get into a position to take a few photos, although the snake was moving so quickly that few of them turned out.

After dinner at the café, we went out for another night walk, finding the usual assortment of frogs and geckos, as well as a small, brightly coloured snake. 

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