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Snakes alive!

April 22, 2014

They’re out there…

With the recent spate of warm weather the wildlife in Finland has come alive over the last couple weeks. Yesterday we headed to Pirttimäki in Espoo, which is a popular destination for people who enjoy the outdoors. The Pirttimäki outdoor recreation area is administered and maintained by the City of Helsinki’s recreation department even though it is situated in Espoo. There is a cafe there as well and I just noticed there is information available in English.

About a kilometre from the main building on the trails that take you west, there is a pond that is currently full of croaking frogs! This experience was a first for me, as I have never seen so many frogs in such close proximity making so much noise! A search of Wikipedia revealed that they are European common frogs. I took video in order to capture the croaking, but mine is not as good as the one in the Wikipedia link. Take a listen!

What also caught me by surprise were the snakes… It wasn’t a surprise really, but I guess I could say I wasn’t expecting to see any snakes yesterday. The warm weather draws them out and we saw two. If you spend time in Finland, you will be warned by locals that one of two species of snake found in Finland are venomous. Cue up the kyy, or common European viper. (If you don’t like snakes, don’t click the link!)

The Mr. nearly stepped on the first one, which wound away from us hissing all the while. The second one crossed our path in front of us and continued on its way… Knowing that they can bite if alarmed, I made sure I stuck to the middle of the path for the rest of our hike! We didn’t see any more after that. I did warn a couple who was walking their dog off-leash who had actually been discussing whether they would see any snakes. Keep your dogs close, you don’t want them getting bitten!



One Comment leave one →
  1. anonymous permalink
    April 22, 2014 11:31 am

    Vipers like the sunshine, too. Good thing they are timid.
    It’s a good idea to wear rubber boots, if you’re expecting to meet any. And not the ankle-length kind.

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