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Durban mechanic shocked to find rare venomous snouted cobra under hood of truck

A SNOUTED cobra which is usually found in the northern parts of KZN was discovered under a hood of a truck at a transport company in Shallcross in Durban. The truck had come from the KZN north coast. | Nick Evans

A SNOUTED cobra which is usually found in the northern parts of KZN was discovered under a hood of a truck at a transport company in Shallcross in Durban. The truck had come from the KZN north coast. | Nick Evans

Published Apr 25, 2022

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Durban - When a mechanic based in Shallcross in Durban opened the hood of a truck, which had travelled down from the KZN North Coast near Richards Bay, he was shocked to find a highly venomous snouted cobra.

Snake rescuer Nick Evans said the last time he caught a snouted cobra was in 2016 and it was far from Durban.

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Evans said he received a call from a transport company on Friday after one of the mechanics working on the truck lifted the battery cover and found a large brown and yellow snake.

He said service on the truck came to a halt.

Evans said he first assumed that the snake was a forest cobra or a python because of where the truck came from.

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“My two guesses were incorrect. When I lifted the battery cover, I was pleasantly surprised to find a snouted cobra,” he said.

He said snouted cobras are highly venomous, and like forest cobras, they don’t spit.

“It tried darting off into the undercarriage of the truck, but I grabbed the tail, and managed to get it to reverse. Soon I had it in a bucket,” he said.

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Evans said this type of snake is not found in Durban. They are found in the Richards Bay area and become more common further north.

He said the snake gets its name from an upturned scale on the snout.

Evans measured the snake at just over a metre long.

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“I’d imagine it's going to thoroughly enjoy the bowl of water I'm going to give it. Must have been a hot ride down to Durban,” he added.

A SNOUTED cobra which is usually found in the northern parts of KZN was discovered under a hood of a truck at a transport company in Shallcross in Durban. | Nick Evans

A SNOUTED cobra which is usually found in the northern parts of KZN was discovered under a hood of a truck at a transport company in Shallcross in Durban. | Nick Evans

MEANWHILE on Thursday, Evans caught another highly venomous snake in Inanda.

“This boomslang was basking in a tree next to a home after eating a massive meal. Biggest meal I've seen a boomslang with. The homeowner suspects it may have been a resident pigeon. Boomslang mostly do eat birds (they enjoy chameleons too, maybe a rodent as well),” he said.

Evans said judging by the dark colour of the snake, he assumed that it was female.

“Boomslangs have a potent haemotoxic venom, but are fortunately docile if left alone, and generally stick to the trees. However, it still can make a community feel very uneasy, as was the case here,” he said.

A BOOMSLANG caught in Inanda last week. Picture: Nick Evans

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