The blunt-headed tree snake, Imantodes cenchoa, is a startling creature to stumble into at night. My encounter with this individual occurred a couple of years ago on the Osa Peninsula (in June) in southern Costa Rica. There were no sounds of rustling leaves or slithering scales from the ground. This snake came winding (silently) out of a tree, passed along an available branch and spread its full body over an enormous leaf a few feet from my disbelieving stare.
You would think that an experienced entomologist would be unflinching under such circumstances – and indeed my hunting instincts become fully active upon hearing the low buzz of a night-flying beetle. But snakes are different. When I see them unexpectedly, they can give me the spooks. Fortunately I recovered in time to take a picture. It’s an impressive creature, for sure.
The picture of the coast was taken the next day about a mile from where we found the snake.