A Slithery Character Upsets the Moorhen Mum…

Last week while volunteering for Wildlife Heritage Foundation I managed to get a photograph of this:


If you look very carefully between the baby moorhen chick on the right and its parent on the left, there is a grass snake. I think it was trying to make a snack out of the small chick because it’s the smallest one out of 7 that the moorhen adults have.

I was lucky to get this shot, if the parent moorhen hadn’t made such loud alarm calls I wouldn’t have seen this. Originally I thought the adult moorhens were raising the alarm because there are crows nesting near the pond that these lovely wetland birds have made their home. This wasn’t the case though and the grass snake was the source of the disturbance. Fortunately for all the chicks the snake swam away and all was well (after the parent had made such a protective stance against the snake). 😀


After the grass snake left the chicks came out of the pond with one of the adults and started to forage for food near where we were working at the time. It’s lovely to see all the wildlife around WHF and not least the moorhens and their chicks in the spring.


Have you seen anything like this or have you been able to catch some on video or photograph? Would be good to hear if you have? 🙂

Sorry about the poor quality of the photography but the chicks are a little skittish and like to dive back to the safety of the pond and undergrowth and I only have my small camera on volunteer days. 🙂


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