Residents of Florida are used to having to deal with snakes, everything from Rattlesnakes to Coral Snakes are common occurrences in the “Sunshine State.” But residents of one central Florida community are being warned to be on the lookout for a very deadly snake that recently escaped from its owners home. Officials from the Florida Fish and Wildlife told media that a deadly Suphan Cobra had escaped from its enclosure located in a quiet Ocala neighborhood.
Officials said the escape apparently took place late last night at the home of Brian Purdy. Mr. Purdy contacted state officials around 9 p.m. To notify them of the escaped snake. The phone call, launched an immediate search by an FWC investigator and included both local police and fire officials in the hunt. But the initial search failed to find the snake, so an alert was issued to neighbors in the surrounding area.
The search is continuing this morning. Officials said the area around the 900 block of N Ninth Street in Ocala will be searched today. State fish and wildlife officials believe that thanks to the unusually cold temperatures it is likely the deadly snake will not have traveled far, choosing instead to find somewhere warm to hold up. “Residents in the area are urged to use caution until this snake has been captured,” an FWC release warned. “Although reclusive by nature, cobras are highly venomous and will strike out if they feel threatened.
Last year in a similar incident, a King Cobra escaped from it’s enclosure after a tree fell on top of a home during a storm. It took three days to find that Cobra, and when they did it was found hiding under an electric dryer in the home of a neighbor about a block away. The snake was recovered without incident in that case.
FWC says the cobra is about 2 feet in length, with “distinctive multi-color markings.” If anyone sees the snake, they should remain at a safe distance and immediately call the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922 or *FWC or #FWC on cell phones.