Desert Shovel-nosed Snake

The Shov­el-nosed Snake can streak over asphalt or sand faster than the eye can follow.

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Photographing a diminutive shovel-nose snake.Pho­tograph­ing the breezy Desert Shov­el-nosed Snake requires mutu­al cooperation–not nec­es­sar­i­ly from the snake–to hold the nec­es­sary lamps and pro­tect the snake from any acci­den­tal place­ment of a shoe. The shov­el-nose is no lag­gard, either, and can bury itself out of sight before you can locate where it dis­ap­peared to.

A sec­ond shov­el-nose seen lat­er in the night lacked the orange band­ing, as is com­mon, was over 12″ long and sought to hide under the pho­tog­ra­pher’s shoes as wit­nessed by three observers. Care­ful­ly rais­ing the shoe, the snake had already van­ished, Hou­di­ni-style, most like­ly into the sand a few feet away.

Pho­to top Bar­bara Swanson
Pho­to left cour­tesy of Kevin Price