Mamba in the engine!

I had an eventful Monday night last night…

My friend Shane Pike sent me a photo of a green snake slithering up into the engine compartment of someone’s car, in Amanzimtoti. We weren’t quite sure what it was from the pic, but we had high hopes of it being a Green Mamba, so we decided to meet there to investigate. I had planned a romantic dinner with my fiancee’, but it would have to wait till I was done (which I thought would be a lot sooner than what it ended up being).

The car was parked in the underground parking of a block of flats on Beach Road. A strange place for a snake to be, especially a mamba. It was in the middle of a busy area, with not much bush around. Perhaps it had caught a lift in with another car? Snakes have been known to hitchhike that way!

We were told that someone had just opened it up to have a look for the snake, but they couldn’t see it. I started to lose hope after that, but it was cold, so the snake shouldn’t have left the engine compartment…

Shane popped the bonnet, and I tried to open it up. I struggled to find the lever to do so, so I was moving my hands from side-to-side of the bonnet, trying to feel for the lever. Eventually, after looking, I found it. As I lifted the bonnet up, I immediately saw the body of a Green Mamba stretched across the front of the engine- I had been moving my hands right above it!

I shouted ” It’s a Mamba!” and ran to get my tongs from my car while Shane held up the bonnet. It was cruising around the engine compartment, probably enjoying the warmth. I quickly got a good, secure grip behind the mambas head. We untangled it from around the bits and pieces that it wrapped around. Success!!

I was so ecstatic, this was only the second Green Mamba I had caught! The first one was also in the engine compartment of a car.

They are one of the most beautiful snakes around, with the nicest shade of green on them! Like the Black Mamba, they’re misunderstood. They too are highly venomous, but are even more shy than the Black Mamba, and more calm. They’re very seldom seen, as they spend their time living in the canopies of coastal forests along the KZN coastline. They sadly are under threat though, as our coastline is constantly being developed. Because of this, they are starting to move inland, up river systems. So they are starting to be seen in areas that they never used to occur in.

Once we finished up, we got in my car, and left for Umbumbulu for another Mamba- but that’s a story for tomorrow!

For snake removals you can contact me, Nick Evans ,on 072 809 5806

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