Thaliparambu: Frequent spotting of snakes in and around houses is increasingly being reported likely owing to drastic climatic changes as well as destruction of hills, forests and valleys. However, when snakes take a fancy to a particular place of human habitation, there could be some other reasons too.
T V Sarojini and her family were shocked to find several snakes congregate on the courtyard of their house at Pattuvam in Kerala's Kannur district.
There were more than five snakes, later identified as the striped keelback species. But fortunately, these slithered away after some time.
Sarojini's son Shyju, a solider, shot a video of the snakes and sent it to Rajendran, a teacher and activist of the Kerala Sastra Sahitya Parishad, a leftist body promoting science.
Rajendran then forwarded the video to M P Chandran, a snake conservationist and member of the rapid response team of the Forest Department. He identified them as the mildly venomous 'Theliyan' as the striped keelback is known locally.
These snakes do not trouble humans and are often helpful as they feed on rodents. Typically, several male snakes mate with one female snake and the family was witness to this sighting.
There are several superstitious beliefs surrounding the striped keelback in Kerala. They are also known as 'Niram Mari' and 'Padakoodi' in local parlance.