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guess who's hiding in my compost bin

Just been round the garden collecting up those naughty slugs and snails who were having a field day after the rain and went to the compost bin - to find a grass snake curled up on the top.  It's one of those black dalek bins so it must have come in from the bottom.  Now I'm wondering if I can continue to add to the's the first time I've ever seen one in my garden.



  • bekkie hughesbekkie hughes Posts: 5,294
    You are so lucky! Ive never even seen one, have you been using your bin regularly? If you have then it mustnt bother it image
  • artjakartjak Posts: 4,167

    I have one living under the flower bed. The Jack Russell kind of knows that 'something' is there so she is being a vigilante, with me telling her often NOT to go on the flower bed.

    GG, I would just carry on as normal; the snake probably likes the heat generated by a well run compost bin. (my new BIG bin was actually smoking slightly as I turned it the other weekimage so added a little liquid to cool it down)image

  • Philippa - it was sitting (well curled up) on top of the compost, so it slithered downwards!  I'm a bit worried after looking online if it will be laying eggs in the compost, though it seems a bit late for that.  Perhaps it's already laid eggs and they are about to hatch?

    I shall be wary of taking the lid of in future....image

  • granmagranma Posts: 1,929

    Two years ago during a sudden heat wave I too  found a snake in my    d a l e c k compost bin .I think it was a grass snake .I was stood there wondering if I'd have time to get my camera.  I hesitated too

    Long  , it had gone when I rushed back.  

    I continued to fill my bin but made sure I made a noise as I approached it ,so it could get out of the way . Also in case it was an adder as that year we had also seen some very large adders basking in the sun on the paving slabs .

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,267

    There are slow worms at the bottom of my allotment, they look like small snakes but are legless lizzards. I can't bring myself to pick them up to move yet. They like compost area's, being under black plastic, logs etc, due to the heat, snakes are possibly the same. 

    If disturbed, I leave them to find somewhere else to shelter. Slow worms keep the slug population down image but also eat wormsimage.

  • TootlesTootles Posts: 1,469

    Eeeek! I know they are harmless, and a lovely sign of healthy wildlife.... but the thought of a snake of any kind scares the living daylights out of me!  I'm a real animal lover so would NEVER ever hurt anything but I reckon you'd hear my scream in timbooooktoo!!  Good luck GG. You are one brave chick!

  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,619

    I had slow worms and a grass snake in one of my bins last year. The grass snake burrowed in very quickly when the lid was lifted but the slow worms are, well, slow to react. As soon as one of them moves though they all move pretty smartly. I still add material to the bins and the slow worms haven't moved out.

  • what happens when you weant to use the compost?

    Tootles - I felt more brave when I had a ladder snake zig-zagging across my terrace in France this year, but it was more afraid of me than the other way round and disappeared under a large patio planter.  I figured it must have departed in the night as the next day the lizards were running in and out under the pot as usual.

  • Peat BPeat B Posts: 441

    When I was doing VSO  out in PNG, on my first day on station, out in the bush of Western Province, a python was found by the head teachers chicken coop. It was dispatched and kaikai'd, (eaten) within the hour. Tasted very much like chicken but with the bones, it had a similarity to a kipper ! The 1/2 digested chicken inside was also kaikai'd and it was reported, just as tasty, but I turned this down as a gnaw too far !   No grass snakes OR slow worms on my lotty I'm afraid to say. 

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