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Black Mamba found curled up behind bag of potatoes in Westville

Nick Evans mentioned that most species of snakes are hatching at this time of the year, but that does not mean people should panic.

A 2.3m-long Black Mamba was found hiding behind a bag of potatoes at a Westville home.

Nick Evans said the snake found itself into a storage area of a large kitchen, and it was a straightforward catch.

The snake catcher said that this time of year, Black Mambas, and most species of snakes, are hatching, but he emphasised that this does not mean Durban is about to be swarmed with young, bloodthirsty snakes.

Also read: Nick Evans shares his exciting Black Mambas removal day

In the past few days, he said he was kept busy at some business premises in Westville.

“Just before 08:00, I was sent a video of a small, dark snake on top of a shrub. I could tell it was a hatchling Black Mamba. Black Mambas hatch out at lengths of 50–60cm, about the length of this individual. Big babies. And yes, they are venomous from day one.”

Unfortunately, for this individual, it had been hit by something, and its spine had been severed. It was euthanised.

“Just a few hours later, I was surprised to get a call from the same premises. Another Black Mamba had been found, but this one was no baby and, thankfully, was alive and well!

“It was in some trees next to the parking lot, making everyone feel a bit uneasy. The catch was not at all enjoyable and terribly nerve-racking, but I managed and had the plus-minus 2.1m mamba secure. I was delighted to be on the ground again after that,” said Evans.

He pointed out that another important fact to remember is that the mother snake is not nearby, watching her babies.

“That’s often the first fear that comes to mind when people encounter a juvenile snake – ‘Where’s the mother?'”

According to Evans, mother snakes lay their eggs and leave them – the Southern African Python is an exception. The father snakes move off after mating.

“When the baby snakes hatch, they disperse – they don’t stick together for safety in numbers. As they disperse, they get picked off by predators, such as birds, monitor lizards, genets and mongoose. So, no, hatching season doesn’t mean that it needs to be panic season,” said Evans.

He advised people not to ask a snake remover to come and find the nest as there’s no nest to find, and the eggs are often laid underground.

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