A huge python dragged a 5-year-old boy into a swimming pool in Australia and coiled around him.
Beau Blake had been walking near a pool at his home in Byron Bay, New South Wales, when the 9-foot carpet python slithered from the garden and bit his leg, 9News reported.
The snake, three times the size of the boy, dragged him into the pool and began coiling itself around his leg.
Pythons are non-venomous, meaning bites are not fatal. But their teeth can inflict a painful injury.
“I just started kicking back on the lounge, just started enjoying a tin [can of beer] and all of a sudden it was on,” the boy’s father Ben Blake told NBN News. “Before he even hit the bottom of the pool it was completely wrapped around the leg… it was from the bite right up to around his knee joint.”
The boy’s grandfather, 76-year-old Alan Blake, instantly jumped into the pool after his grandson.
Once the boy was out of the pool, the snake was unlatched from his leg. His father told NBN that he grabbed the snake close to the head, “squeezed and pulled.”
The incident must have been “scary for the parents,” herpetologist Chris Jolly, a postdoctoral research fellow at Charles Sturt University and research associate at the Australian Museum, told Newsweek.
“It’s is quite a freak occurrence […] Unprovoked python bites on humans are extremely rare. We’re well outside the size range of their normal prey. Bites usually occur because the snake feels threatened and lacking any limbs, the only means of defence they have is to bite. It’s newsworthy because it’s so uncommon,” Jolly said.
The boy escaped the incident with only minor injuries but was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.
“Pythons have long, thin, recurved teeth designed to grip onto furry or feather prey. They tend to just leave a lot of little holes in you if you’re bitten, but if you pull away they can cause more damage,” Jolly said.
Pythons kill their prey by constriction. The snake wraps itself around its prey, getting tighter every time it takes breath, until it suffocates.
In this case, the snake was released back into the bush after the incident, the boy’s father told Melbourne radio station 3AW.
“He went back to the scene of the crime, the naughty thing,” Blake told the news outlet.
The snake season in Australia is currently in full swing. The cold-blooded reptiles become more active in the warm spring and summer months. During this time, snakes are commonly found slithering into residential areas in search of food and shelter. They can sometimes turn up in strange places. One was recently found in a roof near Queensland.
In October, two carpet pythons were filmed wrestling over a female in a vicious brawl.
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