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‘Leave snakes alone’ warning amid increased sightings on Welsh beach

28 Jul 2022 3 minute read
European adder picture by Thomas Brown (CC BY 2.0)

Lewis Smith, local democracy reporter

Reports of snake sightings in have increased this summer according to a Welsh local authority, following a record breaking heatwave that has swept across the UK.

Bridgend council has reported receiving a higher number of enquiries than usual regarding snake sightings in the borough, especially in the Rest Bay area of Porthcawl.

It follows new research published in the Clinical Toxicology journal which revealed that more people in the UK are reporting injuries caused by snakebites than ever before.

Most of these, however, have been caused as a result of snakes being kept as pets, with Bridgend County Borough Council reassuring residents and visitors that there is very little risk of harm from native species.

Porthcawl Beach Front Lewis Smith

Councillor John Spanswick, cabinet member for communities said: “The UK is home to both grass snakes and adders, and while only the adder is toxic, its bite is rarely fatal and can be easily treated. Most reported incidents involve dogs rather than humans, and in the vast majority of cases, a full recovery is made.

“Adders and grass snakes can often be seen at the side of rural paths, and can be identified by their distinct markings – adders have a zig-zag pattern running along their backs, while grass snakes have a distinctive yellow collar and two small black triangles just below their heads.

“The council and its partners have produced a handy guide called ‘Snakes of the Bridgend Coast’ to help people spot snakes and other reptiles within Bridgend County Borough, and which offers advice on what to do if you come across one.

“The best advice for anyone who encounters a snake while out and about is to simply leave them alone, and try not to disturb them. All British reptiles are protected under law, and the adder is a species that is considered to be particularly at risk.”

‘Stay calm’

A council spokesperson added: “With people flocking to the coast this summer, the stunning bays and beaches of Porthcawl in Bridgend County Borough are proving to be popular with more than just tourists and visitors.

“If you think that you may have been bitten by an adder, stay calm and do as little walking as possible. Go directly to A&E or call 999 for assistance, and remove any jewellery and watches from the bitten limb.

“Never tie a tourniquet, try to cut or suck the venom out or attempt to catch or kill the snake.”


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Bill
Bill
4 months ago

One problem is that people often confuse slow worms (actually lizards) with snakes.

William
William
4 months ago
Reply to  Bill

No they don’t

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
4 months ago

Same for Rhosneigr / Snakeheath/moor on Ynys Mon on the common, best avoided altogether, stay on the beach and keep dogs on lead if possible…don’t touch dead seabirds, avian flu about too and keep an eye on kids swimming, far too many drownings and drive carefully, lots of bad accidents on Welsh roads Might be best to stay at home…

Bernard grady
Bernard grady
4 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

Jesus just don’t go out ever eh .

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
4 months ago
Reply to  Bernard grady

It was a sly ‘joke’ to put off tourists…

William
William
4 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

Like war and peace that reply

The Original Mark
The Original Mark
4 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

best to stay at home mab and post on nation.cymru

One of the two witnesses
One of the two witnesses
4 months ago

No British snake is going to chase you. Any adder is only going to bite you if it feels threatened by you or if you step on it. So just don’t do either of those things. 95% of the time you might see one, it will be basking on rocks or sand (which retain the sun’s heat) and the other 5% of the time either hunting small prey or travelling to / from their basking spot.
The article mentions Rest Bay. The Photo shows Coney Beach

Last edited 4 months ago by One of the two witnesses
Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
4 months ago

Is that near Coney Island?

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
4 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

As for Adders, I remember my mam finding two curled up asleep on our front door step and brushing them onto a dustpan and depositing them over the fence and down the bank they went, your knowledge betrays your whereabouts methinks…It looks a lovely day on Coney Beach webcam…

One of the two witnesses
One of the two witnesses
4 months ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

Yeah the beach is in front of the funfair. I don’t live in Porthcawl, but my Mam does

Brian Clement
Brian Clement
4 months ago

Recall a notice I saw in California which read: “Please do not pick up the rattlesnakes”.

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