Pretoria Zoo's mamba found

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IOL black mamba Independent Newspapers File photo: Supplied

 Pretoria - The Pretoria Zoo's black mamba who went missing last month was found on Sunday.

“He was spotted slithering along the wall of the Reptile Park service area,” said the zoo's spokesman Craig Allenby.

“Reptile Park staff have caught the snake and he is being kept in a darkened container in order to keep him calm.”

Allenby said the mamba, nicknamed 'Houdini', was in good condition and would spend the next few days in the container to readjust.

“Houdini did not respond to the food that was placed in the service access area and has not fed since his escape.”

He said, however, snakes could go several weeks without feeding and the mamba would eat sometime next week.

Allenby said that “without a shadow of doubt” the returned snake was Houdini.

“He has a distinguishing kink in his tail that resulted from a previous injury he received before being donated to the zoo.”

On March 11, Houdini was noticed to be missing from his terrarium at the zoo's Reptile Park.

An extensive search ensued and at one stage the zoo even contemplated whether the mamba had been stolen.

Allenby said Houdini would return to the public spotlight soon. - Sapa

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