Snakes!!! A strange question about Italy

Feb 8th, 2007, 05:56 PM
  #41  
 
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Barb, this question has come up not too long ago, about snakes in Scotland. So, you're not the only one with this fear, and not the only one to have posted this question on Fodor's!
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Feb 8th, 2007, 06:17 PM
  #42  
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Well I am glad to hear I'm not the only one with such a crippling fear! (Apparently someone also posted a similar question on the Asia site.) I will, of course, post my adventures when we return (end of May); hopefully none of them will involve reptiles.

You make a good point about the beach. I didn't realize Portofino didn't have a beach. It's one of those places I've always dreamed of visiting. Do you think it will disappoint? Or is it as beautiful as the pictures show it to be?
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Feb 8th, 2007, 07:44 PM
  #43  
 
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You can add Newfoundland and New Zealand to the list of snake-free zones.
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Feb 8th, 2007, 08:01 PM
  #44  
 
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i would use the money you would save to get some counseling.
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Feb 9th, 2007, 04:14 AM
  #45  
 
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Go on the beech. Despite my fears I would still go on the beech
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Feb 9th, 2007, 04:52 AM
  #46  
 
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I was once in northern Tuscany (near Camaiore) in the summer when it was quite hot, being driven back to my accommodation late at night, and came across a stretch of road which was absolutely covered with snakes. It was explained to me that they like to bask there at night as the tarmac retains the heat of the day.

But in many trips to various parts of Italy, that's the only time I've seen snakes.
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Feb 9th, 2007, 05:16 AM
  #47  
 
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Maybe you'd better keep right away from Australia if you're terrified of snakes. My wife stepped out of a car in outback Western Australia and nearly stepped on one. Each time I tell the story that snake gets bigger and bigger. Last time I told the story it could swallow at least a football team - LOL
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Feb 9th, 2007, 02:45 PM
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fyi, not to scare folks, but interesting in context ...

http://survival.webends.com/appendix_e/
repete is offline  
Feb 9th, 2007, 07:04 PM
  #49  
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We booked it (the beach house with the "sighting"). I was actually feeling very confident about it until I read that last post with the scary link... reminded me why I was scared in the first place... Wish me luck!
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Feb 10th, 2007, 07:15 AM
  #50  
 
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Sorry about that ... just remember that the odds of a problem are so small.

And even those numbers are terribly skewed. Did you know that a high percentage of snakebites (at least in the U.S.) are caused by drunken idiots trying to handle this animals? Read somewhere that 40 percent of U.S. victims had BAC of over .10 ....

I get jumpy around snakes too although you're many, many times more likely to be in a car accident that be threatened by one.
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Feb 10th, 2007, 01:36 PM
  #51  
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Thanks, Repete. And with five kids I certainly won't have time to get drunk (though I may want to)! I remain confident and positive and am repeating my mantra... IF THEY HEAR ME APPROACH THEY WILL FLEE. THEY AVOID PEOPLE... IF THEY HEAR ME APPROACH...
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Feb 10th, 2007, 03:20 PM
  #52  
 
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Snakes are horrible, but you might find them in many unexpected places, how about Bal Harbour in Florida just North of Miami Beach.? In front of the beach there iare green areas with plants and palma trees and bushes , and walking by I have seen a couple . I bet there are quite a few more between plants. Do they do anything?
Guess not if left alone. Those two rushed into the plants.
What I mean I do not think is fair to say Italy Sanakes, because there are snakes in many places not to count some humans that might be called also snakes....LOL
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Feb 10th, 2007, 04:46 PM
  #53  
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There are definitely snakes in Italy. I never happened to see one, even when I was in fields and woods and dry rocky places and near wet places, but maybe I just wasn't being observant enough in the right places at the right times. I don't know whether they're more common in the Italian Riviera, but if the property owner told you there are snakes on that particular property, then I guess there are. That's nice. It may mean that you won't be bothered by rats. Maybe you'd feel better staying at a less rural property.

Since this is a rather odd thread topic anyway, I have an excuse to post this interesting little fact that I heard from an MD who has a lively interest in quirky facts about nature--both wild and human. In the US (or maybe not just in US) most snake bite fatalities involve people who are drunk. Maybe we can infer from that that usually poisonous snakes don't go around attacking people, but that drunks may do things that put themselves at risk of getting badly bitten by poisonous snakes (maybe stepping on them, picking them up, petting them, teasing them?). Italy is not a country known for much drunkenness. Maybe it follows that snake bite fatalities aren't too common in Italy, even if there are poisonous snakes there.

One more interesting little tidbit to share. Maybe someone would like to go to this local festival: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/theme/fe...als_snakes.htm
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Feb 10th, 2007, 07:45 PM
  #54  
 
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Not surprisingly we see a few similar enquiries on the Australia forum, and the responses are pretty much the same: yes, we have snakes; no, you're most unlikely to see any, because they're very timid and only dangerous if they feel directly threatened.

There are many scarier and more aggressive things than snakes. Some humans, for instance.
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Feb 10th, 2007, 07:55 PM
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I'm not sure I understand the "snakes are horrible" concept. I happen to like snakes...had them as pets, even, when I was young. What the heck is it about snakes that freaks people out so? OK, some of them are poisonous...that's potentially scary, but the vast majority of them are not. Why are they any more frightening than other wild creatures?

I confess to having an aversion to lizards until I bought my house in the Dordogne and realized that lizards were going to be very much a part of everyday life there, at least when it was warm. Now I enjoy the heck out of them, give them names, love it when they venture past the front door two inches into the living room and then scoot out again.....

Why are so many people scared of snakes? Personally, I'm much more wary of scorpions, which are all over the south of Europe.
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Feb 11th, 2007, 02:17 AM
  #56  
 
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I forget where I read it, but might have been the Darwin Awards, where 2 guys were playing "catch" with a live snake. Naturally enough the snake got a bit "hissed off" and so bit one of them causing his death - if it was Darwin Awards then, thankfully, we are rid of that gene pool.
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Feb 11th, 2007, 07:20 PM
  #57  
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I'm not sure what it is that makes "us" (whoever WE are) so afraid of snakes. I've never had a close encounter with one; like I said, I'm a Philly girl (and have seen my share of other creepy things. I used to teach in an old school building in the city and we regularly had little visitors.) But snakes are my biggest fear, for reasons unknown. I think the way they slither around so quietly is part of it -- they seem to appear out of nowhere -- and just the way they look... Oooh... just the thought of it...
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Feb 11th, 2007, 07:36 PM
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I just have to add this about my favorite Gonzaga University basketball player, David Prendergraft, who is from Brewster, Washington. One of the reasons he's my favorite is that in the summer he and his friends go rattlesnake hunting. Now that's a tough kid!
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Feb 12th, 2007, 03:35 AM
  #59  
 
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I think a lot of people don't like the idea of snakes as they think they are cold & slimy - but are fine when introduced to one & discover it's warm and dry. This happened to my mother at a small zoo & she even ended up having a photo taken with the snake round her neck !
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Feb 12th, 2007, 05:55 AM
  #60  
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I think that without even realizing it, many Americans and Europeans may fear or hate snakes because from early childhood they may have been influenced by snake imagery in their religion or the role of the snake in stories that are part of Christianity and also possibly part of Judaism. My guess is that this negative attitude toward snakes may be much less common in eastern cultures.
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