In a rare find, a Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus) was spotted during an inspection of a reserve at Landsborough, purchased through the Sunshine Coast Environment Levy.
Although common in southern states, it’s only the fifth official recorded sighting of this species of snake on the Sunshine Coast, the last time being 2015.
Snakes are an important part of a healthy, natural ecosystem helping to keep populations of prey species, such as rodents, in check – and providing a food source for other predators.
Environment and Liveability Portfolio Councillor Peter Cox said the Tiger Snake sighting demonstrated the value of the Council’s Environment Levy funded Land Acquisition program which strategically acquires land to protect, preserve and enhance our natural environment including conserving threatened plants and animals.
“This latest record of the Tiger Snake confirms what we already know – that the bushland areas in the Pumicestone Passage catchment are biodiverse and extremely valuable to our region,” Cr Cox said.
“In the last financial year, $1.7 million was invested in Sunshine Coast’s conservation estate, adding another four properties and 90 hectares of protected land for our native plants and animals.
“Each year Sunshine Coast Council’s Environment Levy funded fauna monitoring program gives an insight into what species are living in those reserves and what their threats and predators are.
“The data helps council make strategic, well-informed decisions on the next steps to restore reserves, and helps us to monitor the results of our management techniques over the long-term.”
Senior Natural Areas Planner Jacqueline Nolen said Tiger Snakes were rare on the Sunshine Coast because they preferred cooler climates.
“The lower part of the Sunshine Coast marks the northern most extent of its coastal distribution,” Ms Nolen said.
“Tiger Snakes once extended north into the Noosa region, however historical habitat loss and persecution has contributed to local extinctions and it’s now thought that this species is no longer found in the northern part of the Sunshine Coast.
“Tiger Snakes feed mainly on frogs, but mammals, birds and lizards are also included in its diet and it is known to live in rainforest, heath and open forest.
“The Tiger Snake is highly venomous and should be left alone.”