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WATCH: Man frees 2-metre black mamba entangled in the wheel arch of a truck in Limpopo

Man using a steel hook to free a 2-metre long black mamba from inside the wheel arch of a truck.

Two metre long black mamba rescued from the wheel arch of a truck in Tzaneen, Limpopo. Picture: Screen grab of video circulating on social media.

Published Mar 22, 2022

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In a video circulating on social media a man, who has been catching snakes from a young age but has not been formally trained, is seen trying to dislodge a 2-metre-long black mamba from the wheel arch of a truck in Tzaneen, Limpopo.

In the video, the cabin of the truck, where the driver sits, is tilted forward, exposing the wheel arch for the rescue.

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The man is seen using a pole with a hook to secure the mamba just below the head. He struggles to dislodge the mamba as its body appears to be wrapped around something on the inside of the arch.

The mamba moves its head from side to side as the man tries to loosen its grip.

Minutes later, the mamba gives in and the man is able to slowly pull it out of the wheel arch.

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He then places the mamba on the ground where he begins to secure it inside a long pipe.

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Two-metre-long black mamba rescued from the wheel arch of a truck in Tzaneen, Limpopo. Picture: Screen grab of video circulating on social media.

Meanwhile, in a separate incident at the weekend, Neville Wolmarans, of the Ndlondlo Reptile Park in Ballito, said he had to drop everything to help a man who had got himself into a tricky situation after catching a black mamba.

According to Wolmarans, the man was no longer in control of the snake.

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“This gentleman has been doing his best to save snakes but can't bring himself to touch them! So he has a ‘loopstick’ that he uses to snare the snakes with. This time he had snared a baby black mamba and could not release the loop,” he said.

Wolmarans warned that using this device puts three parties in danger.

“This action puts three parties in danger, the person responsible for that action, the snake and the professional that has to save the situation,” he said.

He said loopsticks were an extremely cruel piece of equipment particularly in the hands of untrained snake wranglers.

A “loopstick” used to catch a black mamba in Ballito. This tool is said to be cruel and is not recommended for the rescue of snakes. Picture: Ndlondlo Reptile Park

“The loop applies pressure on two or three neck vertebrae and can very easily terminally injure a snake. At best the snake could suffer broken ribs and damaged organs such as lungs. Once the animal has been ‘looped’ one has to be able to take control of the snake without getting bitten.

“With tongs the release is controlled, but that is not the case with loopsticks. The snake now has to be ‘necked’ and the handler now has to try to use a tool of sorts to pull the loop open without further injuring the snake and not offering the snake the opportunity to bite the rescuer,” said Wolmarans.

He appealed to the public not to use loopsticks and to rather call in a professional from the start.

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