Cunning Cobra

June 18, 2023

The thought of seeing a Cape Cobra might frighten most of you. But for me, it was a truly epic and thrilling hour on safari. As it is fascinating to see how the snake operates and to hear the birds screaming.

We watched this fat hungry Cape cobra slide its way through a Social Weaver nest. Eating and filling its tummy.

The sociable weaver is a species of bird in the weaver family that is endemic to Southern Africa. These incredible birds are found in South Africa, Namibia, and Botswana. However, they are mainly found in the Northern Cape.

These clever birds build large compound community nests, a rarity among birds. These nests are perhaps the most spectacular structure built by any bird.  They are massive and host many weaver nests. The Pygmy Falcon is also known to arrive and steal a nest to rear their young.  I have always been a twitcher, absolutely love birds

It’s important to note, the venom of the Cape cobra is highly potent and primarily neurotoxic, affecting the nervous system of its prey. When threatened, they can deliver a quick and accurate bite, injecting venom into their prey or potential predators. I have huge respect for snakes. They are truly amazing creatures! 

The birds in the Kalahari, are simply gorgeous, I found myself ticking off many birds that I had not seen before, our ranger Kyle from Tswalu, has to be one of the most knowledgeable game rangers I have ever experienced.  His knowledge and passion rubbed off on me.

From the start of our journey, I said to our tracker Oom Ben, who has been in the Kalahari for over 15 years, I want to see a snake, needless to say, we saw two.  Our first was a beautiful Mottled Cape Cobra and our second was a hungry Cape Cobra.

I was really excited to see this cobra in a tree. Usually, the Cape Cobras are found on the ground, but can, at times, be seen climbing in trees and shrubs where they hunt for young birds and eggs in nests. What an awesome sight! Even though it was heartbreaking!

That is where we found our Cape Cobra, slithering inside a massive nest, eventually coming with his mouth full.

Cape Cobra

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