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Snake wrangler Mbali Mtshali joins Simon & Siouxsie in new season of ‘Snakes in the City’

Simon Keys, Mbali Mtshali and Siouxsie Gillett of ‘Snakes in the City’. Picture: Supplied

Simon Keys, Mbali Mtshali and Siouxsie Gillett of ‘Snakes in the City’. Picture: Supplied

Published Jun 23, 2022


If you’re not into snakes, then it’s not the show for you.

“Snakes in the City” duo Simon Keys and Siouxsie Gillett’s will be back for an exciting new season of the slithery show in July. This time though, they get help from local snake wrangler and body builder, Mbali Mtshali who’s amped for the weird and wonderful rescues.

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No stranger to venomous snakes, Mtshali had her first exposure to working with reptiles while volunteering at a non-profit organisation. She later cut her teeth handling snakes while assisting at a reptile park.

“For many years, in my culture, these reptiles have been misinterpreted as a sign of witchcraft, a bad omen and an image of the evil serpent,” said Mtshali.

She said her message for viewers and the community is that snakes are not the evil monsters that they have been made out to be.

“Snakes are more afraid of us than we could ever be of them. Working on ‘Snakes in the City’ shows that residents of Durban can catch snakes too – with the right training,” she added.

On season eight, Simon, Siouxsie and Mtshali will race across the city to face some of the world’s deadliest snakes in the most bizarre situations and release them back into the wild while teaching people about the slithery reptiles.

Siouxsie Gillett, Mbali Mtshali and Simon Keys of ‘Snakes in the City’. Picture: Supplied

Mtshali’s skills are immediately put to the test when they go up against a lethal black mamba inside a school, a puff adder in a toilet and an enormous python on a goat farm, not to mention a super-fast monitor lizard in a ceiling and a spitting cobra inside a local shop.

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Christine Service, senior vice president and general manager of The Walt Disney Company Africa said: “We are excited to welcome Mbali to our screens, bringing her infectious energy and passion that, together with Simon and Siouxsie, will go a long way in helping change negative perceptions of these fascinating creatures for National Geographic Wild audiences across the continent.”

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