Snake on bus shocks passengers

The Herald February 23, 1989

SOME people carry their lunch in their briefcases, others carry snakes, as passengers on a Harare bus discovered to their horror on Tuesday.

The usual tiresome, but uneventful journey from Greendale to the city centre became a great deal more exciting when a baby python was seen emerging from a briefcase.

Passengers sitting or standing next to the man with the briefcase, after being momentarily paralysed with shock, raced to the back of the bus.

Fears of being bitten, and some unspoken fears of witchcraft, were quickly laid to rest when the snake’s keeper announced that he was a biology teacher who loved snakes.

He had reared the python from the egg. Pythons are non-venomous snakes and a baby python is too small to be dangerous.

LESSONS FOR TODAY

  • Most people are scared of snakes whether they are poisonous or not and when they encounter snakes, their first instinct and reaction is to run or kill them.
  • Most species of snakes are not dangerous to humans. The vast majority of snakes are neither venomous (they do not have a toxic bite), nor are they large enough to pose a threat to humans by constriction.
  • Studies have shown that snakes do not want to bite people even the venomous ones. The last thing they want to do is waste their venom on a person.

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