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‘I enjoy days like today!’ says snake catcher after making 4 black mamba saves in Durban


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Durban — It was 4 black mamba captures for Durban snake catcher Nick Evans who was called out to rescue a black mamba in a roofing system, one from under a geyser, then another mamba in a garage and a 4th in a ceiling.

Evans said it began when he got a call from a house owner in Westville informing him that a group dealing with the roofing of her shed had actually discovered a snake in there.

“My heart sank.

“I get many calls like this. I’ve been trying to think of the number of times I’ve actually caught a snake in such a scenario – none come to mind.

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“Sometimes, it’s a wire and not a snake. Most of the time it’s either a non-venomous brown house snake or spotted bush snake, both of which either vanish before you arrive or get into places you can’t reach.

“To catch a small snake in a ceiling is nearly impossible,” Evans explained.

He said the female was close to a nature reserve, so he believed there was a possibility it was a mamba. They did state it was huge, the density of a choice axe manage, obviously, however the majority of the time, the description of a huge snake did not match the snake in concern.

“On my way to investigate, I got a call from Westville North, for a black mamba inside a home, so I opted to go to that first,” Evans said.

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He said the snake remained in a wendy house, under the kitchen area cabinet.

“I had to lift a few planks up to get at it. Bit of a feisty one, around 2.2-2.3m in length, although a bit on the skinny side,” Evans said.

‘I Enjoy Days Like Today Says Snake Catcher After Making
The black mamba under the kitchen cupboard. Picture: Nick Evans

He said he eventually arrived at the Dawncliffe home and climbed onto the roof.

He said he shone his JETBeam South Africa torch down, and the snake was in plain sight, with a good torch, much to his relief.

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“It was curled up under the geyser. I could just see a tiny section of the body, but enough to know it was a black mamba,” Evans said.

“I thought finding it would be the hard part, but it wasn’t, capturing it was.”

Evans said that initially, there did not appear to be a method of accessing the snake, so he half-attempted to get it from above however might see he was losing his time.

He said he was believing that there needed to be a method of accessing the geyser, difficult for there not to be.

Then he saw there were wood slabs that appeared like they might be secured, on one side of the geyser.

After entering into a couple of spaces, they determined where they might be accessed from a restroom.

“I went in, and unscrewed two planks joined together. When they dropped, a section of the mamba’s body dropped out! Fortunately, I half-expected that. The mamba got a massive fright! I could see it was trying to think of somewhere to escape to, but before it could do that, I got the tongs on it,” Evans explained.

“The body came sprawling out of this gap I had created, and I basically lowered it down onto the floor as gently as possible and grabbed it there.”

Evans said it was not an enormous mamba, around 2.1-2.2m. More well-fed than the very first mamba of the day. If there were rats in the roofing, they would not exist any longer! Mambas are a rat’s worst headache.

He said he was grateful to the house owners who called.

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A black mamba concealing behind tires in a garage in Westville. Picture: Nick Evans

Evans said his 3rd mamba was at a home in Westville where a mamba was seen in the garage however when it saw individuals, it worried and ducked behind some tires.

He said the next call, in Malvern, had actually can be found in and he remained in a little bit of a rush.

“I moved the tyres quickly and grabbed the snake. Uneventful catch really of a 2m± mamba,” Evans said.

He remembered that he had actually been to the home in the past.

“The first mamba I got there had been killed. Now, they know they can call for help, it’s the safer option, and I’m so grateful for that, I really am.”

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A black mamba that chose to crawl into the ceiling of a home in Malvern. Picture: Nick Evans

Evans said that the mamba in Malvern was a bit more difficult.

“The homeowner had seen it in the garage, but, to make my life difficult, it moved up into the ceiling. Of course, it did, on a sweltering hot day and, I had to climb from one end of the roof to the other to get where it had gone into. They know how to make life inconvenient!” Evans exclaimed.

He said mambas are exceptional climbers and they like ceilings since they are warm, and protected and there is normally a rat or more in them.

“I climbed across, sweating in the sauna-like roof. As I neared the end, by the wall, I spotted the mamba, curled up,” Evans said.

“I’m not sure if it was my JETBeam South Africa headlamp blinding it or if it was just confused, but it didn’t move. It just watched me approach, and finally, grab it. Probably the easiest roof capture I’ve had.”

Evans said it was a young snake, about 1.5m±.

“I enjoy days like today!”

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