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WATCH | Team effort: Snake catcher and wife rescue two female black mambas from Durban roof

  • A snake rescuer saved two female black mambas from a roof in Inanda at the end of August.
  • It is unusual to find two young females together, especially during mating season.
  • Smaller mambas are more challenging to catch, but Evans was helped by his wife and residents in the area.

When a family spotted two black mambas in the roof of their house, in the rural, bushy and hillside area near Inanda Dam, they gave veteran snake rescuer Nick Evans a call.

Evans and his wife, Joelle, headed to the house, west of Durban, after 21:00. 

He said the area provided the perfect natural habitat for snakes, adding that human-snake conflict was commonplace in the area.

“The two females were about 1.8 metres in length. I’ve never had two mambas of that size together,” he told News24.

Evans explained that winter is black mamba mating season.

PICS | Black mamba rescued from a thatched roof at KZN game reserve

It is common to find mature males and females together or males fighting during this time, but it’s far rarer to spot two young females. 

“Snakes don’t usually live together, but maybe they just found a nice winter retreat in the roof where it was warm and maybe a few rats to eat.”

Evans said mating season this year has been much quieter than usual.

He suspects it has something to do with the colder temperatures.

The rescue took approximately 2.5 hours because, according to Evans, smaller mambas are a lot more challenging to catch. 

He said:

I had to chase them around the roof, but they were moving between the top of the wall and the roof, and were difficult to grab.

Evans eventually climbed on top of the roof to rescue the second snake, where it was hiding under a carpet and a piece of corrugated iron.

Luckily, Joelle came along to help, and the residents were there to offer another extra pair of eyes, “which is always useful”, Evans said.

The snakes were released together into a wild area away from any houses.

Evans expects to see more snake activity as we move into spring – because warmer weather typically means more snakes.

“The frogs are waking up, and that’s food for them, so we’ll be seeing a lot more frog-eating snake activity,” he said.

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