Some photographs are just funny.

Or at least I think they are.

Here is a photo of a rare banana snake that I took last year in the Louisiana bayou. People who have never seen one often assume it’s yellow, but it gets its name from actually eating bananas. There aren’t a lot of bananas growing on the Gulf Coast, which explains why it’s so uncommon in that area. These snakes tend to live near produce department dumpsters, monkey exhibits at zoos, and schoolyards, where accessible bananas are more likely to be found.

The banana snake is not poisonous, and it has no teeth. It is harmless, unless you are a banana.


A banana snake can eat any number of unpeeled bananas, which, when placed end to end, do not exceed the length of the snake. When it is finished with its meal it lays on the grass in the sunlight, slowly digesting the fruit. Looking at the curvature of the snake, you can discern the sizes, shapes, and positions of the bananas as they were consumed.

“There’s just no way to tell people they are all walking around, shining,¬†like the sun.” — Thomas Merton