Boomslang rescued from Stellenbosch farm

Posted by Anita Froneman on 8 September 2020

Snake Removal Helderberg received a phone call from a farm just outside Stellenbosch saying there was a snake on the property. This was the first snake removal of the season.

‘On coming to the place, I stuck my head in and immediately knew I was working with a boomslang by seeing those big stunning eyes staring at me,’ said Justin Collocott, owner of the removal service,

‘I put on my glove (made for not getting bit through)and slowly took the boomslang out of the groove he wedged himself into. It was a cold morning so the snake was not that active and only outside the shed the boomslang gave that warning sign of puffing up its throat (shown in the one photo), much like a cobra flattening its hood,’ Collocott continued.

He added that the snake was just past its juvenile stage when the eye color is starting to change. ‘I could already see that it is a male with already showing the black top half and the yellow starting to develop at the heads side,’ he added.

Soo my first venomous snake of the season happened last week amd what a beauty 😍.
While at work i got a call from a farm…

Posted by Snake Removal Helderberg on Monday, 7 September 2020


The boomslang (or tree snake) is largely tree-living but may descend to the ground to bask. In trees it poses no threat to humans as it is extremely reluctant to bite and bites are rare. It is a popular fallacy that being back-fanged it can only bite onto a small digit – this is incorrect as it can open its mouth very wide.

Hatchlings and juveniles are grey with a massive emerald green eye but change to their adult colours when reaching 1 m in length. Most males are bright green, sometimes with black between the scales, but in the Cape provinces they are usually black above with green, yellow or orange sides. Females are brown in colour.

Boomslang venom is haemotoxic and compromises the blood clotting mechanism, causing uncontrolled bleeding if not treated. The South African Vaccine Producers manufacture a monovalent antivenom for Boomslang bites that is very effective.

Image: Snake Removal Helderberg



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