WATCH | Injured black mamba rescued from roof of Durban shack

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  • Snake rescuer Nick Evans retrieved an injured black mamba from the roof of a shack in Reservoir Hills last month.
  • The snake had reportedly been slithering from shack roof to shack roof, looking for a safe place to hide.
  • A community member hit the snake, but its injuries weren't severe; Evans later released it into a safe location.

When veteran snake rescuer, Nick Evans, last month received a call-out to an informal settlement in Reservoir Hills, Durban, he wasn't surprised to find a black mamba hidden in the roof of one of the shacks. 

"Most people in Durban know that this area is famous for mambas. Where there are valleys, there are mambas; it's the perfect habitat," he told News24.

Evans said snakes find their way into informal settlements because it is usually very close to the bush and due to the likelihood of rats.

Shacks also offer a warm hiding place in the evening.

"The snake had probably come into the shacks, looking for a hiding place to rest for the evening. Mambas are diurnal and don't move around in the evenings," he said.

"The only thing not good for the snake is all the people, and the snake isn't good for the people either," he added.

Residents told Evans the mamba had slithered from shack to shack through the roofs.

"It does just show they don't want to fight, even though they have a bad reputation."

Catch and release

He told News24 the rescue was pretty easy, and the snake remained calm throughout – this despite it being injured. 

One of the community members had apparently hit the snake, but its injuries weren't severe.

Evans released the mamba, which measured just under two metres, into a safe location.  

He reminded readers that we're heading into black mamba mating season – coincidentally his favourite time of the year.

Mambas are active throughout the year, but moving forward, we can expect to see "exciting" fights between the males, Evans said.

"The males wrestle over the attention of a female. I look forward to this every winter - it's a spectacular display."

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