A large snake, which is one of the deadliest species in Australia, was found in the air conditioning system of a family, what a snake catcher called an “insane” find.
Stuart McKenzie of Sunshine Coast Snake Catchers 24/7 took part in a mission to Marcoola, a coastal town about 60 miles north of Brisbane, when he found the eastern brown snake. In a Facebook posting, he said the “decent sized” creature had been spotted sledding through the village.
The Eastern Brown Snake is responsible for more deaths in Australia than any other snake species. It is a poisonous species that tends to be nervous and react defensively when surprised or cornered, according to the Australia Museum in a profile of the animal.
Its venom contains potent toxins that can lead to progressive paralysis and uncontrollable bleeding. Some deaths are due to cerebral hemorrhages due to clotting problems. Even the first bite is generally painless and can be difficult to detect. Many bites are due to people trying to kill these snakes, so “obviously could have been avoided”, according to the museum.
At the meeting in Marcoola, McKenzie said that a man who had followed the snake from a distance had seen it pass under an air conditioner. “After searching the area for a while, I got used to having to pull this air conditioner apart, where we found the eastern brown snake hiding inside,” he said.
In footage posted on Facebook, McKenzie can be seen lifting the lid after removing a panel from the unit. After shining a flashlight into it, he sees the snake. “That’s crazy,” he says when he sees the snake.
He grabs the snake by the tail and it dangles for about a minute while McKenzie arranges a bag to put it inside. “That’s a huge brown snake,” he said, and later said it was between four and five feet long. Later he is shown letting go of the snake, and he says the case shows how these animals can get anywhere.
A day later, McKenzie was called to another report about an eastern brown snake in the town of Diddillibah, about five miles from Marcoola. At this encounter, which McKenzie described as “sketchy,” the snake was in some bushes in front of a man’s house.
He said the snake was “nice and relaxed” until he and his team showed up. After trying to catch the snake in the open, it escaped under the house and McKenzie was forced to duck and search in the dark to catch it.
The footage shows the cornered snake lunging at a breathless McKenzie before he can put it in a sack. “The poor little guy got very defensive when we had to corner him to catch him in one of the most dangerous situations I’ve ever dealt with,” he wrote.