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'Missing snake' note rattles Malmö residents

TT/The Local/dl · 4 Apr 2011, 09:23

Published: 04 Apr 2011 09:23 GMT+02:00

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According to a note posted three weeks ago in the building's entryway, the 1.3 metre long snake, an Inland Taipan, escaped from its owner, according to several media reports.

The Inland Taipan, also known as the Small Scaled Snake, is native to Australia and is known as one of the world's most poisonous snakes.

The note described the snake as "a teenager" which hadn't yet fully developed its venomous potential, and urged anyone who may have seen it to contact a veterinarian or emergency services.

For the last three weeks, special snake hunters have been called in to help find the escaped predator, but so far without success.

In the meantime, residents have been living in fear that the missing snake may turn up unexpectedly in their apartments, prompting a number of tenants to close up ventilation ducts and keep their lids of their toilets shut, the Aftonbladet newspaper reports.

"We don't know who owns a snake here in the building. There are neighbours who have suspicions, but it could also be a joke," an official with Malmö's office of environmental affairs told the local Sydsvenskan newspaper.

Jonas Wahlström from the Skansen animal park in Stockholm also suspects the note about the missing Taipan is a "sick joke".

"The Inland Taipan is found in only one place in Sweden and that's at the Skansen vivarium," he told Aftonbladet.

Story continues below…

"They are incredibly poisonous so they aren't especially popular as pets."

If, however, an Inland Taipan really is slithering loose in Malmö, the risk of local residents finding themselves in an unexpected encounter with the snake is extremely small, according to Wahlström.

TT/The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:10 April 4, 2011 by DJECKY
I will not write any thing,no comment.if it has come to the point that snacks are involved then i take my leave SIR, BYE.
10:23 April 4, 2011 by BrittInSweden
You don't like snacks? I do like a bag of crisps every now and then myself.
11:47 April 4, 2011 by wenddiver
Doesn't anybody havea pet mongoose?
11:51 April 4, 2011 by zircon
Interesting species Taipan.
12:17 April 4, 2011 by Nemesis
They will find it when it bites someone.
12:38 April 4, 2011 by bravo96
Seems to be a lot of these slithering around in Malmö these days : )
14:23 April 4, 2011 by Steggles
Relax everybody.......it's a desert creature and wont survive with out warm conditions.

Considering it's still rather cold in Sweden it's probably already dead.
15:08 April 4, 2011 by Nemesis
@ Steggles,

The last week in malmö has been hovering around 10C.
15:46 April 4, 2011 by Rishonim
Only...............trash people own snakes ;-)
16:11 April 4, 2011 by Tanskalainen
Let's hope it crawls up the mayor's pants.
16:14 April 4, 2011 by zircon
10- (Hahahaha) Och!
16:17 April 4, 2011 by wolverine2k
Does anyone know which area is the snake lost in? And it would be good if local could add links to actual stories for people to find out more information...
16:55 April 4, 2011 by demosterone
If there is a thing a snake knows how to do, it is to find a warm place.

That being said, it will also need water. I can imagine it will survive for a while if it trully exists.
17:00 April 4, 2011 by Syftfel
How do you say in Arabic "No, it's not OK to keep a poisonous snake as a pet in Sweden"?
17:53 April 4, 2011 by Localer
can't believe these people can have this kind of snake in Sweden!
20:17 April 4, 2011 by bow290
ha ha ha ha ha! wow! bring an Aussie over here against his will hey!?

not only is the Taipan one of the venomous snakes in the world but also one of the most aggressive!

but feel safe guys in that area, due to cold winters Sweds have good insulation which means the snake wont be getting in through any gaps or open doorways etc... It will however endeavour to find a warm place to sleep and then somewhere warm in the sun to gain body heat/energy. all snakes are cold blooded.

so be weary of dark warm places around the area where the poor guy might be hanging out. i don't think Swedish hospitals carry anti venom for Taipans so .... be careful. Steve Irwin would find him in a heartbeat if he still had one himself.

Aussie out :)
20:17 April 4, 2011 by rquick
@Steggles. If it's cold, it will hybernate, not die.
20:29 April 4, 2011 by sunnchilde
How incredibly stupid to have a snake like this in private hands! Freaking irresponsible! What's next? Keeping a Great White shark in your swimming pool?
21:59 April 4, 2011 by Arturio
I'm not worried yesterday I bought a mongoose
22:44 April 4, 2011 by Ivan Juric
Whats the big deal.....I come across the taipans cousin the brown snakes in our garden just throw a rock at it.
00:37 April 5, 2011 by Twiceshy2
> If, however, an Inland Taipan really is slithering loose in Malmö, the risk of local residents finding themselves in an unexpected encounter with the snake is extremely small, according to Wahlström.

The risk of one specific resident encountering the snake is probably really small, yeah... What about the risk that any resident meets the snake?
02:32 April 5, 2011 by Da Goat
It will be summer before one finds it as it will be curled up sleeping in a warm place. it is a desert animal so will be able to handle the cold as well!

remember if you get bitten, make your peace with God coz you only have a couple of minutes left! these snakes strike and wait as they know their prey is dead and will not fight back! they go into a rat nest and just go strike strike strike on all the rats which die instantly (almost) the coastal taipan strike and back off then follow their prey!
03:28 April 5, 2011 by volvoman9
Oh God! Not the Assange thing again.
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