Sam & Sim, The Siamese Watersnake

Sam & Sim, The Siamese Watersnake, rickzimmerman 2010
Sam & Sim, The Siamese Watersnake, rickzimmerman 2010

Meet slippery smiley social Sam & Sim — twins, sort of. Emerging simultaneously from the same egg, these playful guys actually inhabit only a single snakeskin, as they are Siamese twins.

Of course, today one might not call them Siamese twins. While it’s true these fellas hatched in what was once the nation of Siam — in a boggy area near the gulf coastal village of Prachuap Khiri Khan — since their land is now known as Thailand, we might better call them a Thailand Twosome.

Being of a species of Little Filesnake, Sam & Sim have a snakeskin that is loose and baggy, as if a few sizes too large for them. (Ever the pranksters, in the picture above they have inflated their chests, sucking in their breath to better spew out bubble streams at the camera.) They spend their entire lives in the water, sliding, spinning and swirling, usually in the same symmetrical S-shape we see here.

But these happy-go-lucky serpents have been known to cause the occasional problem. They sometimes get so carried away with their deepsea sub-marine spinning that they create underwater vortexes that can become mini-maelstroms on the surface. Just last month, their submerged spinning sucked shrimper Sakda Sum Rap Soi’s sampan below the surface.    

A markerprachuap khiri kahn, thailand -
Prachuap Khiri Khan, Thailand
[get directions]

Head east to the coast to find the boggy birthplace of Sam & Sim.

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