how fast can snakes swim?!

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sorry if this is rather unusual question...
two days ago i went for a short walk and saw what i presume was a small boa (it was not an eel!) under water in a large puddle. before i managed to take a photo it went off at rather high speed -- I've zeen various species of snakes swim on the surface but they were rather slow compared to this one (speed comparable to a fish)...

(i apologize that replyr will take a while as I've no idea when I'll get out of the jungle next time...)
 

Janne

Guest
Feb 10, 2016
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Grand Cayman, Norway, Sweden
I have been in a canoe, chasing European Grass snakes (for a bit of harmless fun, not to eat it) and had to paddle pretty fast to keep up.

Estimate speed of a walking human, when you are a few minutes late.
 
I have been in a canoe, chasing European Grass snakes (for a bit of harmless fun, not to eat it) and had to paddle pretty fast to keep up.

Estimate speed of a walking human, when you are a few minutes late.

that sounds like the snakes i saw swimming on the surface -- the one two days ago was more like a trout going off at full speed when tickling wasn't successful....
 

Erbswurst

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 5, 2018
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Berlin
I met only once in my life a snake in the middle of a lake some where in France. It was around 50 cm long and as fast as me, a good swimmer.
 

Erbswurst

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 5, 2018
3,174
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Berlin
It was a snake. Around 40 cm under the surface.
Because it wasn't faster than me I had enough time to observe it.

Unfortunately in this time my french wasn't good enough to speak with the inhabitants about it. I was very young.

But my father had seen it too and he was very well informed about snakes.

After the war he had collected animals like this in the backyards in Berlin, where some times before some kind british pilots had constructed fantastic little lakes every where. So my father had, when he was ten years old, a little zoologic garden in the end of the fourties.

;0)

Its funny , that today we can profite together from the knowledge gained in this circumstances.
 
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santaman2000

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Jan 15, 2011
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Florida
Moccasins swim underwater. They actually hunt underwater for fish and frogs. I have no reason to believe there aren't European snakes that do likewise.
 

Robson Valley

Full Member
Nov 24, 2014
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McBride, BC
We have only Red-Lined Garter snakes here. They will do their best to escape on land when threatened.
They don't swim, far as I know, because the big trout will kill them (video records).

They use water to loosen their old skin when it's shedding time.
In our lab colony, they shed after every 3 frogs eaten (we hand-fed the snakes. Kind of fun.)
 

Erbswurst

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 5, 2018
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Berlin
May be, that they like swimming in the south of France, because there in the summer the water is warm, and in Britain, Scandinavia, Germany and so on, they do not like swimming, because the water is cold?
 

JonathanD

Ophiological Genius
Sep 3, 2004
12,679
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Stourton,UK
Snakes can swim very fast. Some species faster than others. A slender species of python or boa can move as fast as a human running. Our native grass snake can also reach those speeds over short distances. King cobras have been clocked as even faster.
 

Janne

Guest
Feb 10, 2016
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Grand Cayman, Norway, Sweden
May be, that they like swimming in the south of France, because there in the summer the water is warm, and in Britain, Scandinavia, Germany and so on, they do not like swimming, because the water is cold?

I do not know if they like it, but they can be seen hunting in the water, so if they are hungry......

I always found it strange that they can propell themseves using the same motion though.
 

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