WATCH: Are these snakes dancing or fighting?
A VIDEO of two large pythons entwined and dancing in a Byron Bay tree has caused mass confusion on social media over whether they were mating or fighting.
Frances Allan captured the intimate moment last Thursday in the bush behind the Suffolk Park Fire Station and posted it to the Byron Bay community Facebook page, sparking a healthy debate over what the reptiles were in fact up to.
To clear things up, local and experienced snake catcher Sue Johnson from Northern Rivers Reptile Relocation confirmed the coastal carpet pythons were two males in combat, fighting for the affections of a nearby female.
"When snakes are reproducing they are very quiet and are normally intertwined on the ground,” Ms Johnson said.
"They don't raise their bodies at all and are quite still. If anyone comes across two male snakes fighting, just watch and be impressed.”
With snake activity increasing coming into Spring, Ms Johnson said the sight was an extremely common occurrence at this time of the year.
"Around the start of September and sometimes even late August is the start of the breeding season for reptiles,” she said.
"It will be fairly intense for the next two months.
"If anyone sees a snake and they aren't sure what it is, or even if they know what it is, keep well away from it - unless it's inside a house or somewhere a little be removed - then call a wildlife cares or professional snake catcher like myself.”
She said it was a busy time of year for snake catchers, with the most common snake call outs being for coastal carpet pythons and eastern brown snakes.