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I came across a snake this afternoon, on the path that runs through the woods between Frimley and Farnborough North station.  It was tiny, less than 20cm long, and dark, almost black, with a narrow yellowish collar just behind its head: probably a newly-hatched grass snake (Natrix natrix).  Just last Friday afternoon I had come across a larger black snake, maybe a metre long, a bit further along the same path.  That one didn't have any visible collar, but I suppose it could have been a melanistic grass snake. 

I remember having seen a similar large black snake near there a year or two ago.  It was crossing the tarmac at the eastern end of the bridge over the Blackwater Valley Relief Road.  I stopped to observe it for a while.  Then I left it slowly winding its way across the middle of the road.  Just over the bridge I passed two teenage boys on mountain bikes coming from the opposite direction and immediately regretted not moving the snake off the road and into the bushes.  The boys passed me and a few seconds later I heard one cry out and their bikes screeched to a halt.  I just hurried on to catch my train...

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