Giant snake sighting wreaks havoc in Colombia's south
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Giant snake sighting wreaks havoc in Colombia's south

Police in Colombia’s Guaviare department received an unusual emergency call, amid a three meter long anaconda terrorizing residents in the town of San José de Guaviare.

The giant snake was rescued by police prior to meeting a grizzly end, as local inhabitants were planning on killing the reptile, Entorno Inteligente reported.

“The National Police in the area received the call and underwent procedure to recover the animal, complete photographic records and leaving the snake with the local environmental body,” according to a police release.

The endangered serpent was released a few days later in the “Laguna Caribe” waterway.

Under threat and close to extinction

Weird and wonderful animals are coming under threat across Latin America, with a reported 359 wild species close to extinction in Colombia alone.

In the country’s Putumayo region, the “mamata” turtle is often victim of smuggling to Japan, considered to be a delicacy on the Asian market.

Illegal trade and consumption of iguanas, turtles, caimans, armadillos and “chiguiros” or “capybaras” – a giant rodent found across South America – continues to be on the up across Colombia.

Furthermore, the region’s pink dolphin is also under threat, with a reported 144 killed annually in the country’s Putumayo department. Its meat is much sought after as a cheaper alternative in the region’s commercial fishmarkets.

Slippery sightings

Yet giant snakes occasionally make an appearance across the continent. In Brazil last year, three fishermen were fined close to $600 after mishandling a five meter anaconda. Having uploaded the video to Youtube, the men were charged with illegal hunting of the snake,  without owning an appropriate license.

Those with a fear of snakes will be pleased to hear that the world’s largest prehistoric reptile, once measuring between 14 to 17 meters and the smallest specimens weighing up to a ton in length, is luckily extinct.

“Titanaboa” inhabited Colombia’s Guajira department approximately 60 million years ago. The giant snake was on display in Bogotá’s Botanical Gardens earlier this year.

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