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194501 [2016/01/12 02:04]
tyreless
194501 [2016/01/13 21:34] (current)
tyreless
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 =====The Sydney Bushwalker===== =====The Sydney Bushwalker=====
  
-A monthly Bulletin devoted to matters of interest to The Sydney Bushwalkers,​ 5-Hamilton Street, Sydney+A monthly Bulletin devoted to matters of interest to The Sydney Bushwalkers,​ 5 Hamilton Street, Sydney
  
 ====No.121 ​ January, 1945 Price 6d.==== ====No.121 ​ January, 1945 Price 6d.====
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 By David D. Stead. By David D. Stead.
  
-What famous bushwalker was it who said that the death adder is sum +What famous bushwalker was it who said that the death adder is sum snake? Probably the one that discovered that one of the main differences between snakes and lizards is that a snake has no eyelids - it sees out of its snaked eye! Should a snake bite you while you are on a trip on no account bite it back ac most Australian snakes are poisonous.
-snake? Probably the one that discovered that one of the main differences +
-between snakes and lizards is that a snake has no eyelids - it sees out of its snaked eye! Should a snake bite you while you are on a trip on no account bite it back ac most Australian snakes are poisonous.+
  
-But to be a  little more serious, one might say of the average person'​s knowledge of snakes that it isn't the things they don't know that matter, +But to be a  little more serious, one might say of the average person'​s knowledge of snakes that it isn't the things they don't know that matter, it is the things they do know that aren't true.
-it is the things they do know that aren't true.+
  
 Quite a large volume could be filled with popular, but erroneous beliefs about snakes, but at the moment it is merely proposed to deal with a few of the commoner fallacies and mention some points of interest regarding snakes, finishing up with a brief description of some of our commonest local snakes. Quite a large volume could be filled with popular, but erroneous beliefs about snakes, but at the moment it is merely proposed to deal with a few of the commoner fallacies and mention some points of interest regarding snakes, finishing up with a brief description of some of our commonest local snakes.
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 1. The death adder does not sting with its tail. It does not need to - its business end is its head and is sufficiently deadly not to require any assistance from a stinging tail. The spine at the end of the tail is used as an anchor in soft sand or soil to increase leverage and so assist the numerous belly plates or scales on which all snakes travel. Each of these plates is, of course, attached to a pair of ribs and the harmonious movement of these ribs backwards and forwards which cants the scales so that the rear edge catches on almost microscopic irregularities of surface, is only one of the many wonderful ways in which living things have adapted themselves to their environment over a long period. 1. The death adder does not sting with its tail. It does not need to - its business end is its head and is sufficiently deadly not to require any assistance from a stinging tail. The spine at the end of the tail is used as an anchor in soft sand or soil to increase leverage and so assist the numerous belly plates or scales on which all snakes travel. Each of these plates is, of course, attached to a pair of ribs and the harmonious movement of these ribs backwards and forwards which cants the scales so that the rear edge catches on almost microscopic irregularities of surface, is only one of the many wonderful ways in which living things have adapted themselves to their environment over a long period.
  
-2The fangs of a snake are not to be confused with its tongue which it darts in and out of its mouth continually;​ this is so obvious that I hesitate to mention it but I have heard bushwalkers speak of the fangs when referring to the tongue. The tongue is used as a sensory organ and possibly assists a combined sense of taste and smell by carrying back into the mouth microscopic odorous particles. The fangs are a pair of hollow or grooved teeth through which the vemom is injected into the victim.+2The fangs of a snake are not to be confused with its tongue which it darts in and out of its mouth continually;​ this is so obvious that I hesitate to mention it but I have heard bushwalkers speak of the fangs when referring to the tongue. The tongue is used as a sensory organ and possibly assists a combined sense of taste and smell by carrying back into the mouth microscopic odorous particles. The fangs are a pair of hollow or grooved teeth through which the venom is injected into the victim.
  
 3. Snakes do not swallow their young when danger threatens and disgorge them afterwards. Despite the accounts of otherwise reliable witnesses this feat is quite impossible. Large snakes frequently consume small ones, possibly their own offspring, but the digestive processes of reptiles are very rapid and after even a brief period in the stomach, the contents would be very dead, and snakes have no special compartment between the mouth and the stomach in which to conceal young snakes until danger passes. Some of our snakes, notably the black and the tiger, bear living young, and many times an adult female must have been killed and cut open and a number of fully developed living young found in the oviducts which to an ignorant person might have been mistaken for the stomach. 3. Snakes do not swallow their young when danger threatens and disgorge them afterwards. Despite the accounts of otherwise reliable witnesses this feat is quite impossible. Large snakes frequently consume small ones, possibly their own offspring, but the digestive processes of reptiles are very rapid and after even a brief period in the stomach, the contents would be very dead, and snakes have no special compartment between the mouth and the stomach in which to conceal young snakes until danger passes. Some of our snakes, notably the black and the tiger, bear living young, and many times an adult female must have been killed and cut open and a number of fully developed living young found in the oviducts which to an ignorant person might have been mistaken for the stomach.
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 Must tell you about the only day we had off while we were in Wales. I climbed Snowden after all - and mists don't look much better from the top of Mt. Snowden than from the top of any other mountain. The rain and the fine hail and the cold wind, however, were a bit exceptional,​ and I don't quite remember an occasion when the edges of my ears and my eyebrows, the top part of my cheek and to a lesser extent the whole windward side of my face felt quite so painful - somewhat like my feet felt the last time I crossed the Cox in winter time. Must tell you about the only day we had off while we were in Wales. I climbed Snowden after all - and mists don't look much better from the top of Mt. Snowden than from the top of any other mountain. The rain and the fine hail and the cold wind, however, were a bit exceptional,​ and I don't quite remember an occasion when the edges of my ears and my eyebrows, the top part of my cheek and to a lesser extent the whole windward side of my face felt quite so painful - somewhat like my feet felt the last time I crossed the Cox in winter time.
  
-We set out from Colwyn Bay at the early hour of 7.10 a.m. and caught a train from Llandudno to Bettws-y-coed (pronounced Bettoos-ee-coid). There round the hours of 9 to 10 we wandered up and down amongst the various hostelries looking for some breakfast. No one wanted to give us any and we began to be very impressed with the efficiency of British food rationing and the shortage of +We set out from Colwyn Bay at the early hour of 7.10 a.m. and caught a train from Llandudno to Bettws-y-coed (pronounced Bettoos-ee-coid). There round the hours of 9 to 10 we wandered up and down amongst the various hostelries looking for some breakfast. No one wanted to give us any and we began to be very impressed with the efficiency of British food rationing and the shortage of domestic staff when we found a shop selling some rather miserable but very acceptable apples. Shortly afterwards we found a place which agreed to provide a meal and produced some quite good bacon and eggs (dried - scrambled), and toast and marmalade.
-domestic staff when we found a shop selling some rather miserable but very acceptable apples. Shortly afterwards we found a place which agreed to provide +
-a meal and produced some quite good bacon and eggs (dried - scrambled), and toast and marmalade.+
  
 We then caught a bus to some unpronouncable Welsh village and then hitch-hiked on a R.A.F. transport to some other equally unpronouncable village. We walked a short distance along a road and then took the Pig track to Snowden. We then caught a bus to some unpronouncable Welsh village and then hitch-hiked on a R.A.F. transport to some other equally unpronouncable village. We walked a short distance along a road and then took the Pig track to Snowden.
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 We soon ran into showers and these became more frequent as we neared Snowden. Before we entered the cloud area we were thoroughly wet. We soon ran into showers and these became more frequent as we neared Snowden. Before we entered the cloud area we were thoroughly wet.
  
-Emerging on the other side of the cloud we found a crofter'​s cottage where we were able to relax to tho accompaniment of a cup of tea and a bread and cheese sandwich. Went past more streams and lakes and so down to a bus and train home through Carnarvon.+Emerging on the other side of the cloud we found a crofter'​s cottage where we were able to relax to the accompaniment of a cup of tea and a bread and cheese sandwich. Went past more streams and lakes and so down to a bus and train home through Carnarvon.
  
 Shall have to write you a lyric on the English pub - its easily the best of all the English Institutions even though the beer is weak compared with pre-war. Shall have to write you a lyric on the English pub - its easily the best of all the English Institutions even though the beer is weak compared with pre-war.
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 Things were going beautifully (not a snake to be seen) when quite suddenly Peter shot vertically into the air to the amazing height of fifteen feet, (both David and I are quite sure on this point) and while suspended there he uttered the magic word "​snnnnnake"​. Things were going beautifully (not a snake to be seen) when quite suddenly Peter shot vertically into the air to the amazing height of fifteen feet, (both David and I are quite sure on this point) and while suspended there he uttered the magic word "​snnnnnake"​.
  
-He came down shortly afterwards and the three of us surrounded a small clump of reeds into which our quarry had disappeared. Peter and David were armed with short sticks and carefully I separated the grasses until the black body of our +He came down shortly afterwards and the three of us surrounded a small clump of reeds into which our quarry had disappeared. Peter and David were armed with short sticks and carefully I separated the grasses until the black body of our victim was exposed. One! two! and the sticks held him firm; a little wait and then his head came into view; the hindmast stick (it is so difficult to tell which is the front or back end when a snake is all coiled up) was moved to a position just behind the head. The next move in this "Saga of the Swamp" was enacted by David, in went his hand, and his thumb and forefinger clamped themselves about its neck and a black snake about four feet long was withdrawn from its retreat. Very carefully I photographed the final stage, then popping the catch into David'​s bag we made off towards the rest of the party.
-victim was exposed. One! two! and the sticks held him firm; a little wait and then his head came into view; the hindmast stick (it is so difficult to tell which is the front or back end when a snake is all coiled up) was moved to a position just behind the head. The next move in this "Saga of the Swamp" was enacted by David, in went his hand, and his thumb and forefinger clamped themselves about its neck and a black snake about four feet long was withdrawn from its retreat. Very carefully I photographed the final stage, then popping the catch into David'​s bag we made off towards the rest of the party.+
  
 When we reached them the snake was emptied out on to the road for all and sundry to see and "​admire"​ whilst we explained and demonstrated how it was done by re-catching and re-bagging the specimen. When we reached them the snake was emptied out on to the road for all and sundry to see and "​admire"​ whilst we explained and demonstrated how it was done by re-catching and re-bagging the specimen.
194501.txt · Last modified: 2016/01/13 21:34 by tyreless