snake eats porcupine
The Nature and Garden's Authority

Watch: Hungry Snake Tries to Eat Porcupine, Learns a Lesson

Want to see the face of instant regret?

To any human, a porcupine for dinner sounds like a really, really bad idea—but not so much to a snake, apparently. A photo surfaced on Facebook of a black whip snake trying to eat a porcupine whole.

Posted by the Nature and Garden's Authority, an Israeli government organization that manages the country's national parks and preserves, the photo shows a snake with beautiful black scales and hinged jaw agape. Sticking out of its mouth is the tail-end of an unusual, and no doubt uncomfortable, meal—a porcupine.

The unusual tableau was discovered after several dog owners noticed a motionless snake near a dog park in the community of Shoham, near Tel Aviv. Aviad Bar, a reptile ecologist at Nature and Garden's Authority went to investigate.

That's right—sadly, the snake died in the middle of trying to swallow what would become its last meal.

"It can be assumed that the snake tried to devour the porcupine and as soon as it decided to abandon its unusual meal, it realized the magnitude of its mistake," Aviad Bar said in the Facebook post, as translated by The Jerusalem Post.

Unfortunately, the snake was too far in at that point. Porcupine quills are primarily one-directional, and when the snake tried to spit out the meal, the quills engaged, preventing the snake from disgorging its meal.

Bar identified the snake as a non-venomous member of the black whip snake species. The species is one of the longest in the country and is known for its huge appetite.

Unfortunately for this particular snake, its appetite was no match for the spines of a porcupine. Both snake and porcupine died in the encounter. Weirdly enough, it's not the first or even the second time a snake has tried to eat a porcupine. The results all seem to be the same though, with instant regret from the snake when it tries to spit out the spiny prey.

Israel is home to 41 species of snakes, only 9 of which are poisonous, and 3 different species of porcupines.

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