A young man's warning to "always check" grass before mowing the lawn has helped people avoid a potentially tragic situation, proving you never fully know what's hidden underneath.
Panning through his yard in a now viral video, Brennen pointed out that nothing looked out of the ordinary. However as he zoomed into a dead patch of grass and lifted it up, five bunnies were revealed to be well-hidden in a burrow inside.
Lizards often hidden in Australian lawns
"What we do get is a lot of blue-tongue lizards and other reptiles injured by mowers, also by whipper snippers especially around the base of trees, and in and around retaining walls where they like to live," he told Yahoo News Australia. He said snakes are rescued "less so", as they "tend to react to vibrations and generally move away".
"WIRES advises to keep lawns trimmed as they [snakes] tend to remain under cover except when warming themselves in the sun," the spokesperson said. "And we advise to never attempt to pick up an injured snake, as any animal in pain will be aggressive. Always call your nearest rescue group so a trained rescuer can attend."
On occasion they will also receive calls for the spotted pardalote — a colourful native bird species that is one of the smallest in the country, ranging from eight to ten centimetres, and is found nesting in burrows on the NSW Mid North Coast of NSW and in southeastern Queensland.
"We have had spotted pardalote birds on occasion, but I believe they tend to burrow into raised ground rather than flat ground," he said.
Bandicoots, a protected nocturnal species, are also known to burrow in Australian yards digging 10cm holes, The Australian Museum says.
Besides just taking up space in your yard, they can actually make your soil healthier by aerating it with their digging. Once spread across all of Australia, the now endangered species mainly appears in Victoria and South Australia. Larval beetles, bees, wasps, crickets, caterpillars of larval butterflies and moths are some of the other creatures that are known to create holes in the garden.
'New fear unlocked'
The TikTok by Brennen received more than 1.6 million views, with many shocked that they didn't know what could be under the grass.
"I’m so scared to mow now," one person said. Brennen clarified that he checks for "dead grass, uneven patches, fur, anything suspicious".
Others recounted their own experiences with their close calls in their yard. "Last time I checked, a bunch of garden snakes got up and looked at me," one person said.
"Walk through my grass every time before I mow. Saved countless snakes, tree frogs and bunnies," another said.
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