Visit of a Mozambique Spitting Cobra – by Vlou, the traveling Beagle

“We are driving to the Moholoholo Lodge an Camping near Hoedspruit,” Marcelle explained. The air was dry and hot as we pulled into the Blyde River Canyon. We turned into our campsite, which was tucked away between spiky bushes and under tall acacia trees. IMG_0487The lodge was situated in the middle of a well-maintained lawn along the Blyde River. As soon as the caravan was set up, my humans strolled with me along the river bank. The river still showed the damage from an earlier flood. It had broken away the banks at several places and trees had been uprooted, a beautiful wild sight. The days past by while we enjoyed plenty of walks in the Blyde River Canyon and around the Blyde Dam at the top of the Canyon with its majestic surrounding mountains. Their rugged silhouettes reflected in the water.

IMG_0485One day as my humans were cooking in the caravan, I saw movement next to the water tap of our campsite. I approached carefully not to scare away the weird creature. It left its hollow in the tree and meandered over the ground in direction of the caravan. It doesn’t have any legs, I thought surprized. It has a split tounge, which slips out and in of its mouth all the time. The eyes are naked, round with black pupils like a pinhead. Dropping my head to one side and lifting my ears to hear better, I watched the animal carefully. “WOWOWOU! You’re not going any nearer to the caravan!” I warned the strange creature. “WUFF! WUFF! Stay, where you are!” I barked. The animal stopped and lifted its head up to the same height as my head staring piercingly into my eyes. “WUUUUUUUU, WUUUUU, go away you bizarre beast!” I howled with a less brave voice as the long stretched body with it wide spread head made a hissing warning sound. “O-oh, this is not good!” I thought. I retreated, not letting it out of my sight.

IMG_0483My humans had been alerted by my barking and came to see what I was up to. “Look at that! A young Mozambique Spitting Cobra!” they shouted excited, but a bit anxious, too. “I think it’s called Rinkhals in Afrikaans,” George added. Marcelle called me to leave the snake in peace. As soon as I moved away, the cobra lowered its head and turned around to disappear back into its hollow. Although the snake isn’t the size of a grown up yet, it is kind of a scary animal, I thought. After that, my humans were always keeping a careful eye to the hollow, when they fetched water from the tap!

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