Aussies are being urged not to litter after one of the country's most deadly reptiles was found trapped in someone's discarded rubbish. In a series of devastating photos posted online, a copperhead snake can be seen trapped in the metal can of a Rockstar energy drink.
"Every BLOODY year!!" reads a post on a popular snake catcher's Facebook page. "PLEASE don't be a tosser, and squash your cans before you throw them out!!!"
The images reveal how the expert managed to get to the snake by cutting into the can. "Copperheads have tiny heads and their scales only go one way so they can't back out!" he explained. "Poor buggers."
Fortunately the snake was "not harmed at all" and was released back into the wild, an update on the Snake Catcher Tasmania page confirmed, to the delight of animal lovers. "Not a fan of snakes at all, but not a fan of any animal being injured because of humans' carelessness," came one response.
Deadly trap for snakes hunting prey
Sean Cade from Australian Snake Catchers in NSW said he gets called out to a couple of similar incidents every year. "People just discard their cans and then what tends to happen is a frog or lizard will either seek refuge in there or go looking for something a bit sweet or wet and then find it a little bit difficult to get out," he told Yahoo News Australia. A snake will then stick its head in to catch the prey, and get stuck due to the direction of its scales.
Cade said it's not just snakes he finds caught in cans. "There are lots of different things that can get in there and get stuck. Blue tongues do the same thing. They squeeze their head through and because of their jaw those poor buggers can't get back out either."
Echoing his Tasmanian counterpart, he said the message is clear: "Don't discard your rubbish. Whenever I'm doing education or anything like that, I try to tell the kids, especially the youngsters because they're the future, that this is why you need to get rid of your rubbish; because it's no good for our wildlife."
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