Amorous snakes tie the knot in backyard fight for love
A PAIR of amorous pythons have been filmed entangling themselves in knots in a testosterone-fuelled battle for a lady-snake's affections.
The spotted pythons were going round for round in a Brinsmead backyard when a brave Jack Russell terrier-cross named Slops alerted her owners to the scaly struggle.
Cairns Snake Removals operator David Walton said it was easy for the untrained eye to mistake a snake scrap for snake sex, and these two fellows were definitely not fooling around.
"When snakes breed, it's usually quite a calm, slow sort of thing where they curl up together and cross tails," he said.
"It's sort of like when you see a twisted garden hose wound back on itself.
"They sort of roll on the ground in a circle and one throws the tail over, instead of throwing a leg over."
Chances are, there was an attractive female serpent nearby ready for a bit of how's-your-father.
"It's breeding season at the moment and you tend to see males fighting each other to see who is dominant and gets the right to breed," Mr Walton said.
"When you see them all tangled up like that, that's what they're doing.
The snake-catching business has been steady over winter but is starting to heat up now along with the weather.
There is not really a hibernation season in the tropics, although the cooler weather does tend to slow reptiles down somewhat.
"The warmer it gets, the more action we see," Mr Walton explained.
"We had a big (venomous) black snake in the Showground Shopping Centre a couple of weeks ago.
"It was in an alley that runs between the shops, curled up inside one of the little fire hydrant rooms.
"Black snakes being water orientated, I'd say it had come up out of a drain somewhere, if not underneath somebody's car."
Mr Walton said stowaway serpents were not uncommon.
"I remember years ago, we saw a LandCruiser pull up out the front of where Beethoven's Cafe used to be on Grafton St," he said.
"A big six-foot black snake crawled out from underneath it straight onto the footpath.
"That got the morning coffee drinkers up and going."