Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 08.34.24Come along on to the Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens on World Snake Day (Saturday 16 July) and experience Snakes Alive!, a fantastic new exhibition exploring the secret life of snakes. Come face to face with and find out more about fascinating reptiles such as live boa constrictors, pythons, corn snakes and king snakes.

Visitors will learn about what they eat and how they catch their prey; where they live and hide; how they reproduce and grow and much more. The exhibition is packed with snake specimens, skeletons, models and stunning images as well as interactive games and hands-on displays.

Councillor John Kelly, Sunderland City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Public health, Wellness and Culture, said: “With school holidays coming up it is great to see such a fantastic exhibition here at the Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens. I’m sure many would agree that snakes are truly intriguing. I’d encourage everyone to come along and find out more about these fascinating creatures.

“I would also encourage as many people as possible to make the most of the top class museum, library and heritage services available across the city.”

Nicola Newton, Director of natural history exhibition company Blue Tokay, said “Snakes Alive! takes everyone along into the fascinating life of snakes, bringing to light their beauty, mystery and amazing natural history. Using taxidermy, skeletal mounts and high-definition photography our events demonstrate the distinctive features and behaviours of these extraordinary creatures.”

Focussing on four main types of habitat, the exhibition looks at how snakes have adapted to live there successfully. The biology of snakes is also examined with displays on anatomy, reproduction, the senses, camouflage, and feeding. Snakes Alive asks a variety of questions including: How do they reproduce and grow? How do they protect themselves from predation? How do they sense their surroundings and their prey? How are snakes able to capture prey, and how do they digest and obtain nutrition from their food? The exhibition also discusses defense and looks at the use of venom within snakes.

Snake shows with a resident reptile expert will take place every Saturday with additional shows on Tuesdays and Thursdays during the summer holidays.

There will be a nominal admission charge for the exhibition: Under 16 £2.50, adults £3.50 concessions £2.50. Tickets can be bought on the day at the Museum or in advance on line, please visitwww.seeitdoitsunderland.co.uk/sunderland-museum-winter-gardens for more details.

Family events and activities to support the exhibition include:

Slithering Snakes Hunt
Saturday 16 July – Sunday 4 September
Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens
Museum opening hours
The snakes have escaped from the jungle and are hiding all over the Museum and Winter Gardens. Can you find all the snakes and complete the challenge? Return your completed trail to museum reception to claim a snake themed prize. £2.50 per entry.

Snake Shows
11am, 1pm & 2pm 16 July – 30 August
Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays except 20 August
Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens
Meet live snakes in this 45 minute interactive snake show with our resident reptile expert. £1.50 per person. Suitable for children aged 3+, babies are free. Tickets are available from the museum shop on the day.

Jungle Frieze
Wednesday 17 August
Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens
11am – 12.30pm & 1.30pm – 3pm (drop in)
Help us to decorate a giant jungle frieze with snakes, tree frogs, parrots and much more! The activity is free but donations are welcome.

Spiral Snakes
Wednesday 24 August
Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens
11am – 12.30pm & 1.30pm – 3pm (drop in)
Make a spiral snake to spin in the wind. The activity is free but donations are welcome.

For further information on all the above events please go to www.seeitdoitsunderland.co.uk/sunderland-museum-winter-gardens