Meet slithery cousins

ABOUT EDUCATION: Scales and Tails publisher Troy Kuligowski handles an albino olive python.
ABOUT EDUCATION: Scales and Tails publisher Troy Kuligowski handles an albino olive python. Rob Williams

IF IT has scales or a tail, there's a good chance you'll find it at the Ipswich Showgrounds this Saturday, November 10.

A celebration of all things slithery is creeping into town, with the aim of showing off the friendlier side of the kind of reptiles that usually send people running for high ground.

The Scales and Tails Reptile Festival is an annual celebration organised by the Ipswich-based owners of Scales and Tails Australia, a leading reptile magazine with a worldwide following.

With the help of good friends and fellow conservationists Bob Irwin and Snakebytes reptile channel creator Brian Barczyk, the Kuligowski family, including mum Joy and sons Troy and Denver, will provide hands-on demonstrations involving a variety of stunning snakes.

Reptile breeders and keepers from all across the country will be on hand to showcase their reptiles and answer questions, provide information and share their tips, secrets and wisdom.

"This is the perfect opportunity to check out an amazing array of snakes, lizards, turtles, crocodiles and monitors," Mrs Kuligowski said.

An experienced snake breeder and handler from Lowood, Troy Kuligowski will bring his rare albino olive pythons. Mr Kuligowski said education was the key to ensuring these beautiful creatures survived in healthy numbers in Australia.

"We try to show people that most times when people are bitten by a snake is when they try to chase or kill one," he said.

"A python will not try to sneak into your house in the middle of the night and kill you. In fact it is just like a cat or dog except that it requires far less maintenance."

Although the Kuligowskis encourage people to reduce clutter around the yard where snakes like to hide, there are positive aspects to having certain types of snakes around.

The red-bellied black snake, for example, is known to eat potentially deadly eastern browns. Other highlights will include stalls, shops, auctions and entertainment for the kids.

Scales and Tails Festival

Showgrounds, November 10, 9am-4pm

Reptile demos, stalls, entertainment

$10 adults, $5 for kids aged under 12

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